2 – 2½ lb. red peppers (6-7)
3 Tbsp. olive or vegetable oil
1½ cups yellow onion, chopped
1 c. vegetable broth (or chicken broth, if you prefer.)
2 c. water
1 tsp. salt or to taste
Pinch of Cayenne pepper
8 - 10 fresh basil leaves
1/3 to ½ c. heavy cream (I recommend substituting w/non-dairy creamer or plain soy milk instead for obvious reasons! ;-))
Directions: Cut peppers in half lengthwise; remove stems, seeds & ribs. Lay cut side down on baking sheet; place under broiler. Roast until skins blister & blacken, 15-20 minutes. Remove & cover with foil. Let cool 10-15 minutes. Peel off skins, chop into medium pieces, & set aside. (Note: This can be done the night before. Refrigerate the pieces in a covered dish. Add the pepper juice to the soup as well.)
Warm oil in large saucepan over medium heat. Add onion & sauté until translucent. Add chicken broth, water, salt and cayenne. Cover partially & bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer 15–20 minutes. Add roasted peppers & cook for 10 minutes more.
Drain peppers & onion in colander, reserving liquid. In batches, puree peppers & onions in food processor or blender. Return puree & reserved liquid to saucepan and reheat. Cook, stirring for 3-4 minutes. Stir in lemon juice & cook 1 minute more. Taste & adjust seasonings. Stir in 1/3 of shredded basil. Serve & float 1-2 Tbsp. cream on top & sprinkle with remaining basil. Serves 4.