Saturday, May 26, 2012

Roasted Tomatoes & Basil Soup

I had been thinking to try the Roasted Tomato Soup for very long time. Actually I used to go to Soup Spoon quite often, when i lived in Singapore, just to have this soup.  I remember with one particular friend, we always to met at The Soup Spoon:). And ever since then I wanted to try making it at home.

The other day The Pastry Chef, whom I follow on FB had posted Roasted Tomato Pasta Sauce with Herbs. Which reminded me of the Soup I had been wanting to try. So, that evening instead of Pasta Sauce i tried Soup. Which came of quite well. It tasted exactly as i had expected.

Tomatoes,Chopped carrot, basil leaves (tucked under the tomatoes, so that they don't burn. A very useful tip given by The Pastry Chef.), Garlic.. pealed and smashed by the knife, olive oil and topped with some Salt and Black Pepper.

I generally add carrots to hot tomato soups to add little sweetness to it.

Roasted the tomatoes for 20 Minutes at 180 degrees C.

Churned the Tomatoes with hand blender. Strained the mixture, added little warm water and cream to bring to the right consistency and and boiled.

6 Tomatoes
1/2 Carrot (choped)
few leaves  Basil
2-3 Cloves Garlic
2-3 Tbsp Olive Oil
1 Tsp Sugar
1/2 Cup Cream/ Milk (optional)
Warm Water/ Stock to adjust the consistency of the soup.

1. Roast the Tomatoes, Carrots, Basil Leaves ( Tuck them under the tomatoes to prevent them from burning), Garlic and Salt and Pepper at 180 degrees C for 20 Min. or until the skin of started blistered and skin is getting separated.

2. Remove from oven and peel the tomatoes ( discard the skin).

3. Churn the roasted tomatoes  and others ingredients and strain the mixture.

4. Boil the strained mixture. Add sugar, cream/ milk and warm water to adjust the consistency of the soup.

I garnished the soup with fresh Basil leaves.

Sunday, May 13, 2012


Ruchi, (My Only Indian friend here in Rotterdam) pinged me over the chat and suggested a restaurant called Izkaya a Pan Asian restaurant and bar at lijnbaan, which she wanted to visit for its experience. From the name I guessed, it would be a Japanese restaurant so went on their website to check for the veg. options.

Well, the restaurant does offer quite a unique experience to order food and interaction with staff etc. There is a digital menu on your table. You don't have to wait for the waiter to come and take your order. The tables are normal but over each of them there are dedicated projectors hanging from the ceiling. On the right side of the table you have a small round mouse pad; your table becomes the screen. There is menu bar which has the options for drink, food, dessert, other fun stuff (which includes games, change the table background (tablecloth), call taxi or check how to reach to your next destination, see your meal being prepared in kitchen through the webcam and at the end the bill can be requested).

While browsing through each dish or drink the picture and description appears which makes it so easy to understand what to expect.

Since it was our first visit, most of the time while ordering, we spent in exploring the stuff, which was lot of fun.

For drinks Ruchi and Hugo ordered a Japanese soft drink, Astrid had ordered Ice tea, Hubby had order Plum Sake and I ordered Nomi tea (which I later found out that it was the name of brand of tea and out of the box given to me with different flavours, I chose Orange Spice and White tea).

And then the first dish arrived- Chicken Yakitori! and rice on the side, which was ordered by Astrid. Being vegetarian i only tried the rice which were so aromatic and tasty. I could just have only rice.

The second dish arrived on our table was Salmon Sashmi, a stater ordered by Hugo. It was Salmon on the seaweed salad. As per him it was out of the world!

Third dish belonged to Ruchi, which was fish curry with rice. she loved it.

Then arrived the Grilled Green Asparagus Salad with Poached egg and Curry Mayonnaise, which was ordered by my hubby. Oh My God, I loved the wasabi added to the dressing.. It was just Yum!

And my order- Veg. Potato soup. It was presented very nicely with a soup dish having veggies and a scoop of light cream cheese and soup was given in a jar separately to be poured over cream cheese and veggies. Soup was very light. cream cheese added a unique taste and body to the soup. I enjoyed it.

Since Astrid and Ruchi had ordered their main couse in the forst course only so Hugo, Naren and me continued ordering!

For the next course Hugo had ordered Hotstone Beef Tenderloin ( beef tenderloin marinated in black been sauce served with eggplant in vintage vinegar) and rice on the side. The dish was a wonderful visual treat and as per Hugo it was equally tasty as well!

Naren had ordered Small Sushi platter ( 3 pieces each of Nilgiri and Maki Sushi with soy sauce and wasabi); According to him, this was the best sushi he had eaten so far. He could taste the fish unlike at other places where rice dominate. I am sure next time he is gonna order only Sushi there.

My second order was Moyashi Itame ( Stir fry with bean sprout, shiitake, ginger, chilli pepper, green asparagus and basmati rice) which was quite tasty as well.

For desert, Hugo ordered Lemon Parfait, which again he loved it and Hubby n i had shared Chocolate Mouse with Cherries, the mouse was good but there were alot cherries which neither I nor my hubby enjoyed.

We liked the experience and loved the food! but they only have three veg. options, i had the them all of them. I would only got for the salad again for sure :)