I really enjoy Pacific Natural Foods’ products – I like that the ingredients they use are foods that you can recognize and I also love that so many of their foods are organic. Now that Costco carries their Roasted Red Pepper and Tomato Soup in a multi-pack (vegetarian, not vegan), I usually stock up for a quick meal option when we’re short on time – in my opinion, warming this up is a much better choice than getting takeout from somewhere because at least you know when you’re eating. A quick salad or sandwich with a bowl of this soup makes a fantastic meal.
The only bad thing about the quart sized soup containers is that it is too much for two people to finish in a meal, but not enough for a second meal. I had an open carton leftover in the refrigerator, and decided to jazz it up and turn it into a pasta sauce. Because the soup does contain some organic milk, the sauce turned into a creamy tomato sauce that was delicious.
I started by boiling whole wheat macaroni in a medium sized pot – I used to have a bad habit of making too much pasta, because it just didn’t look like there was enough when I boiled it in a larger pot. I now control this problem by using a smaller pot. As the pasta was cooking, I prepped 3 leeks, 2 cloves of garlic and a bunch of baby broccoli. I cooked the broccoli in my cast iron pan on low heat until it was tender. Once the pasta had finished cooking, I left the pasta to drain in a strainer, and in the same pot, cooked up three roughly chopped leeks with 3 cloves of garlic. I seasoned the sauce with some white pepper and allowed it to cook down a bit to a thicker consistency. I added in the cooked pasta and allowed the mixture to cook for about 30 seconds longer. If I hadn’t been in such a rush, I could have grabbed herbs from my garden, but the creamy texture of the soup was satisfying just on its own.
This whole process took me under 30 minutes (if I could figure out a way to make water boil instantly, it would be even faster). I managed to use up my leftover soup and had only one pot to clean – now that’s an efficient dinner!