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We donated a dinner for 8 to a silent auction for a local charity, the Chase Family Foundation, and a year later were thrilled to get it scheduled. Due to medical concerns and scheduling conflicts it was impossible to do it earlier. They were a really wonderful and super fun group to have for dinner, and we all enjoyed tasting the wonderful Jamieson Ranch wines that were perfectly paired and presented by a friend and local wine expert. We ended up seating 12 people, after cocktails and appetizers on the back deck, and served our first course of Roasted Spiced Carrot Tomato Soup.

end of night table

– The table at the end of the evening


roasted spiced carrot tomato soup

1 pound carrots, peeled and cut into 3-inch pieces

2 tomatoes, halved lengthwise

1 tablespoon oil

1/2 teaspoon five-spice powder

2 cups chicken stock, divided

1/2 cup water

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 tablespoons sour cream

parsley for garnish

Heat oven to 425F.

Arrange carrots and tomatoes on a rimmed baking sheet. Drizzle with oil, tossing to coat. Bake for 15 minutes. Stir and sprinkle with five-spice powder. Bake for 5 minutes longer or until tender.

Remove and discard tomato peels. In a blender, combine carrots, peeled tomatoes, and 1 1/2 cups stock. Process until smooth.

Transfer puree to a medium saucepan. Add water, remaining 1/2 cup stock and salt. Cook over medium heat for 5 minutes or until thoroughly heated.

In a small bowl thin sour cream with enough cream to make it pourable. Transfer to a small squeeze bottle. Spoon soup into bowls, drizzle each serving with sour cream and garnish with parsley.


Recipe adapted from Sandra Lee