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Recipe of the Week

Detail of Caramel Apple-Almond Crepes

Caramel Apple-Almond Crepes

A great dish for dessert or breakfast, these filled crepes are quick and easy to make, full of wonderful flavor, and make any occasion special.

Italian Tomato Bisque

This savory soup is perfect to serve in the winter when fresh tomatoes taste more like styrofoam than the tomatoes we adored in the late summer. Fresh summer tomatoes can be used in season if desired. The mixture of herbs and spices is reminiscent of a sunny day in Italy, making the soup even more welcome during the winter and early spring.

2 tablespoons olive oil
5 tablespoons butter, divided
2 medium minced onions
5 minced garlic cloves
6 chopped celery stalks
1 bay leaf
1 teaspoon crumbled dried basil
1/2 teaspoon crumbled dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon crumbled dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon fennel seed
28 ounces canned tomatoes with juice, diced
6 ounces tomato paste
1 tablespoon sugar
3 tablespoons flour
1 quart heavy cream, warmed

Melt 2 tablespoons butter and olive oil together in a large heavy saucepan over medium heat. Add the onions and sauté until translucent and soft. Add the garlic and celery and cook for three minutes, or until the garlic is aromatic. Add the spices, tomatoes with liquid, tomato paste, and sugar. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly, then reduce the heat, cover, and simmer for 30 minutes. While the tomato mixture is cooking, melt the remaining 3 tablespoons butter in a medium heavy saucepan, but do not brown. Whisk in the flour and cook until a thick, pale brown paste forms. Pour in the heated heavy cream all at once and whisk until smooth. Cook for 20 minutes over low heat, stirring occasionally. Pour through a mesh strainer into the tomato mixture. Stir well. Taste and add salt and pepper to taste. Cover and simmer for at least 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until ready to serve. Ladle into bowls and serve hot.

Makes 6 servings.

Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 1 hour, 20 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour, 30 minutes

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