This recipe is intentionally pretty simple – there doesn’t need to be anything fancy about cream of tomato soup. Whilst this version is vegetarian, you can also make a delicious version by adding in pancetta or lardons.
Start by putting your butter in a medium-sized pan (I use a 5 litre one, like this). Whilst it melts, dice your onions and crush the garlic. Add these when the butter is bubbling and mix to coat everything. Let the onions cook down until they are soft and translucent.
Whilst the onions are cooking, chop your carrots in to small pieces, and do the same to the tomatoes.
Add in the carrots to the pot and let it cook with the lid on for a few minutes to soften the carrots a little (if the pan feels too dry when the carrots are added, pour in some of the stock).
Pop the tomatoes in to the pan and stir through. Then add the rosemary, stock and bay leaves to the pan. Bring the pan to a simmer, then leave to cook for 10 minutes. Add in your balsamic vinegar, turn the hob down a little further and then leave to cook for another 20-30 minutes, until everything is soft and cooked through. Take off the heat and remove the bay leaves and rosemary stalk.
Add in about half of your cream, then use a hand blender to blitz the soup to a smooth consistency. Swirl through the remaining cream on the top and serve immediately.