Red Pepper Soup with Olives, Lemon Rind & Yoghurt

Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Serves


Appears in

Falling Cloudberries

By Tessa Kiros

Published 2004

  • About

You can add any flavours you like to the base of this soup. Here, I use fresh rosemary and serve the soup with a yoghurt, black olive and lemon flavour. You might like to use another herb like fresh basil with a swirl of cream, or try adding a good kick of chilli oil to serve. You could even add a drop of truffle oil and a couple of grilled prawns (broiled shrimp). Serve with or without the yoghurt.


  • 4 red peppers (capsicums), cut in half lengthways and seeds removed
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, lightly crushed with the flat of a knife
  • 1 small red onion, sliced
  • 4 ripe tomatoes, peeled and chopped, or 400 g (14 oz) tinned tomatoes, chopped
  • 300 g (10½ oz) plain greek yoghurt
  • 40 g ( cup) pitted black olives, roughly chopped
  • finely grated rind of 1 lemon
  • leaves from 2 rosemary sprigs, finely chopped


Preheat the grill (broiler) to high. Line a large oven tray with foil and arrange the peppers, skin side up, in a single layer. Grill for about 30 minutes until the skin has darkened in places and swelled up and the peppers are soft. You might need to move them around on the tray so they are evenly grilled or remove the halves that are blackened and leave some in for longer.

Transfer the peppers to a bowl, cover with plastic wrap (or put in a plastic bag and seal) and leave to sweat for 10 minutes to make peeling easier. Peel off the skin.

Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan and sauté the garlic and onion for about 5 minutes. Add the tomato and cook until it begins to bubble. Add the pepper halves, tearing them into large chunks as you put them in the pan. Season with salt and pepper. Add 750 ml (3 cups) water and bring to the boil, then lower the heat, cover the pan and simmer gently for about 30 minutes. Remove from the heat and purée. The soup should be fairly thick: if it seems too watery, simmer uncovered for a while longer. If it seems too thick, add a little more water.

Check the seasoning and serve the soup hot with a dollop of yoghurt and a sprinkling of chopped olives, lemon rind and rosemary.