Smoky Tomato Soup with Crispy Rice

by Jonathan Cheung

A ‘crisp rice’ twist on comfort food tomato soup! Takes a bit of time but worth the effort for the yumm factor.

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Crispy Rice

  • 1 cup/250mL Dainty Royal long grain rice
  • 1/4 cup/65mL Vegetable Oil


  • 2 x 796ml Cans of San Marzano Tomatoes, or good quality canned Whole Tomatoes
  • Salt & Pepper
  • 3 tbsp Olive Oil
  • 1 small Spanish Onion, diced small
  • 2 cloves Garlic, sliced thin
  • 1 tsp. Spanish Smoked Paprika
  • 1 tbsp Tomato Paste
  • 2 tbsp All Purpose Flour
  • 4 cups/1L good quality Chicken or Vegetable Stock
  • 1/2 cup/125ml 35% Whipping Cream
  • 3 tbsp Flat Leaf Parsley, chopped fine
  • Grated Parmesan Cheese, for sprinkling



The night before... Make the Crispy Rice. Cook the rice according to package instructions. Place into a bowl to cool.


Line an 8 x 8 square cake pan with plastic wrap. Pour the cooled rice into the dish and press to spread it out evenly. Press down firm to compact the rice. Cover with more plastic wrap and allow to chill in the fridge overnight.


The next day... Remove the chilled rice and cut into 2 inch x ¾ inch rectangles. Preheat a non stick pan over medium high heat. Add the vegetable oil, and when hot, add the rice cakes. Cook until golden on both sides, flipping only once. Place on paper towels to drain. Set aside.


Turn the oven on to high broil and position a rack to the highest position. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.


Strain the tomatoes through a fine strainer, reserving the liquid, and place the tomatoes on the baking sheet. Place under the broiler until lightly blackened in places, about 10 minutes.


Meanwhile, heat a medium pot over high heat. Add the olive oil, onion, and garlic. Sauté for 4-5 minutes. Add in the smoked paprika, and the tomato paste and flour. Stir to combine. Add the charred tomatoes, the reserved liquid, and 3 cups of the stock. Whisk it all together and bring to a simmer. Allow to simmer for about 15 minutes. If the soup is a bit thick, adjust with the remaining 1 cup of stock.


Using an immersion blender, purée the soup to your desired smoothness. Stir in the cream and season generously with salt and pepper. Serve hot with a couple of the fried rice cakes on top, with a sprinkling of parsley and Parmesan cheese.

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