2 eggplants, peeled and diced olive oil 1 small onion, diced 1 small red or green bell pepper, chopped 2 cloves garlic, minced 1/4 c orange juice 4 cups chicken or vegetable broth 8 Roma tomatoes, peeled and diced (I don't peel them.)
1/2 tsp cumin 1/2 tsp Tabasco sauce 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes, crushed 2 tsp Balsamic vinegar 1 tsp sugar 1/4 tsp paprika 1 tsp salt 1/2 tsp black pepper 1/3 c fresh basil, chopped fine
In a little olive oil, sauté eggplant with orange juice in the pot where you will cook the soup. (The orange juice keeps it from sticking.) Cook until almost mushy. Remove from pot and set aside.
Add a little more olive oil to your pot, heat, and sauté onions and garlic
(If you really want to peel the tomatoes, boil a big pot of water. With a slotted spoon, dip the tomatoes in the water for only about 20 seconds each. Remove and dip in ice water until cool. The skins slide off.)
Dice tomatoes and add them, chicken stock, and seasonings to the pot.
Cook over low heat until tomatoes are tender.
With a potato masher or large slotted spoon, smash the tomatoes.
Add eggplant and simmer with lid off for about 15 minutes.
Serve garnished with chopped basil and French bread.