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Crock Pot Creamy Tomato Soup

From Farm Where Life is Good

<p>A little bit of chopping and then toss it in the crockpot for a slow cook overnight. Lunch for a week!</p>
Source: (Entered by Lara Rasmussen Anderson)
Serves: 5-6

1 Tbsp olive oil
1 cup diced celery
1 cup diced carrots
1 cup diced onions
2 # tomatoes (~5-6 slicers)
1 tsp fresh thyme, stripped from stems
1/4 cup fresh basil or cilantro (for different taste experiences)
3 1/2 cup vegetable broth
1 bay leaf
2 Tbsp margarine (Earth Balance is best)
2 Tbsp flour
3 Tbsp nutritional yeast
1/3 cup grated parmesan-flavor vegan topping (Galaxy Foods)
1 3/4 cup soymilk (unflavored) warmed
salt and pepper to taste

Step by Step Instructions
  1. Heat a large skillet over medium heat, then add the oil, celery, carrots and onions; cook 5 to 6 minutes, or until golden. Add to slow cooker.
  2. You can blanch to skin the tomatoes if you'd like (or not; we blend it at the end of cooking, so skins just add good fiber in my mind.) To do so, boil a pot of water, drop the whole tomato in, push it around for 30-60 seconds, then remove with a slotted spoon and dunk in cold water. The skin will split and peel off easily with your hands.)
  3. Core and chop the tomatoes, making sure to reserve the juices. Add tomatoes and juice to slow cooker. Then add vegetable broth, thyme, basil/cilantro, and bay leaf.
  4. Cover and cook on LOW for 6 hours, until the vegetables get soft and the flavors blend. Remove bay leaf. Using an immersion blender, blend the soup until smooth (or you can carefully do this in small batches in a regular blender).
  5. Melt the margarine over low heat in a large skillet and add the flour. Stir constantly with a whisk for 4 to 5 minutes. Slowly whisk in about 1 cup of the hot soup, then add the 1 3/4 cups of warmed soymilk and stir until smooth. Pour back into the slow cooker and stir, add the Parmesan-style topping and adjust salt and pepper, to taste.