Roasted Red Pepper Soup

Serves 4 to 6 Jarred roasted red peppers create a rich soup that requires almost no work. Garnish with croutons. Serve as a first course.
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
4 medium cloves garlic , slivered
1 medium red onion , chopped
Table salt
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
3 cups jarred roasted red bell peppers , drained and rinsed
1/2 teaspoon hot red pepper flakes
5 sprigs fresh thyme
3 1/2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
1 cup water 3/4 cup heavy cream Ground black pepper

1. Heat butter in Dutch oven over medium-high heat until just melted. Add garlic and cook, stirring frequently, until lightly browned, 1 to 1 1/2 minutes. Add onion and 1/2 teaspoon salt and cook until beginning to brown, 4 to 5 minutes. Add flour and stir constantly until flour is lightly toasted, about 45 seconds. Add red peppers, pepper flakes, thyme sprigs, broth, and water and bring to boil. Reduce heat, partially cover, and simmer until peppers are soft, about 20 minutes.

2. Remove and discard thyme sprigs. Working in batches, puree soup in blender until smooth and creamy. Return soup to clean pot over low heat, stir in cream, and adjust the seasonings with salt and pepper. Serve soup when hot.