CREAM OF ROASTED SWEET RED PEPPER SOUP
8 large sweet red peppers
6 garlic cloves, minced
1 small onion, chopped
3 tablespoons butter or margarine, divided
2 (14-1/2 ounce) cans ready-to-serve chicken broth
2 cups dry white wine
1 bay leaf
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1-1/2 cups whipping cream
Optional Garnish: fresh basil, cut into thin strips
Place peppers on an aluminum foil-lined baking sheet.
Broil 5-1/2 inches from heat (with electric oven door partially opened) about 5 minutes on each side or until peppers look blistered.
Place roased peppers in a heavy duty zip-top plastic bag immediately; seal and let stand 10 minutes.
Peel peppers; remove and discard stem and seeds. Set aside.
Cook minced garlic and chopped onion in 1 tablespoon butter in a Dutch oven over medium heat until crisp-tender.
Ad chicken broth and next 4 ingredients.
Bring to a boil; reduce heat, and simmer 30 minutes.
Pour broth mixture through a large wire-mesh strainer into a large container, reserving solids.
Remove and discard bay leaf. Set broth mixture aside.
Position knife blade in food processor bowl; add reserved solids and roasted peppers.
Process 30 seconds or until mixture is smooth, stopping once to scrape down sides; set pepper puree aside.
Melt remaining 2 tablespoons butter in Dutch oven over low heat; add flour, stirring until smooth.
Cook 1 minute, stirring constantly.
Gradually add broth mixture; cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until thickened and bubbly (abou 3 minutes).
Stir in pepper puree.
Gradually stir in whipping cream.
Cook over low heat until thoroughly heated.
Garnish, if desired, with fresh basil.
YIELD 8 cups