This low-calorie side dish soup is so much healthier and tastier than a canned tomato soup. And it takes just 15 minutes to prepare.
Reserve some of the fennel leaves to garnish the soup. Remove any tough or bruised outer leaves from the fennel bulb. Trim off the root end and the stems; discard. Thoroughly rinse the trimmed bulb and quarter the bulb lengthwise; remove and discard the core. Chop remaining fennel bulb.
In a 4-quart Dutch oven, heat olive oil and butter over medium-high heat. Add fennel, onion, and garlic. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook, covered, for 25 minutes, or until onions are tender, stirring occasionally. Uncover; cook and stir over medium-high heat for 3 to 5 minutes more or until unions are golden.
Add the undrained tomatoes, broth, tomato sauce, vegetable juice and dried basil. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Simmer, covered, for 15 minutes more. Garnish each serving with the reserved fennel leaves. Makes 8 side-dish servings.