The crisp fall weather has been great lately. Leaving off the furnace, and letting the cool, gentle breeze blow in through the windows has been so refreshing. And then yesterday, it snowed. Talk about a shock to the system! To warm up our bellies, I made this Creamy Tomato Basil Soup and some grilled cheese sandwiches. It is a rich, flavorful tomato soup – nothing like canned tomato soup. In fact, my brother-in-law – who is a self-proclaimed tomato hater – ate this soup and asked for more. Pair this with a grilled cheese sandwich and a side salad, and supper is ready.
Creamy Tomato Basil Soup
Scroll down for a printable recipe
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
5 medium tomatoes, peeled, seeded, and chopped OR 1-28 oz can of chopped tomatoes
3 cups tomato juice
1/2 Vidalia or sweet onion, chopped finely
4 Tablespoons butter
4 Tablespoons heavy cream
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 Tablespoon dried basil
1 Tablespoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
Salt and pepper to taste (I used about 1/2 tsp of salt and 1/8 tsp of black pepper)
1. Preheat an enamel coated pot over medium heat (I recommend Le Creuset coated cast iron for cooking any tomato dishes.) and melt butter. Add onions. Cook for 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook 1 minute. Your onions and garlic will be starting to golden before you add the tomatoes.
2. Add tomatoes. And bring to a simmer.
3. Simmer for 15 minutes to soften the tomatoes. They will begin to break down.
4. At this point, add the tomato juice, herbs, salt, pepper, and sugar. Bring this up to a simmer, lid, and cook for another 15 minutes. Pro tip: If you plan to serve with grilled cheese, now is the time to heat the skillet and start assembling sandwiches.
5. Remove from heat. Optional: If you prefer a smooth soup, you may use an immersion blender to puree the soup for a velvety mouth feel. Personally, I don’t mind the texture of the super soft tomatoes, so I only use the immersion blender when I’m serving guests. Finish with heavy cream and taste for salt and pepper. Serve hot.
Fresh tomato soup couldn’t get any easier or delicious. This was one of the most requested meals by my late grandmother. I remember her calling me to say that she bought everything so I could come over and make it – and we could have dinner together. My father-in-law requested this meal for his birthday dinner. and I asked, “Are you sure?” as if I could do better, but my attempt was met with a reassured “Yes!” So, I suppose sometimes it isn’t all about fancy ingredients or expensive cuts of meat, but about the comfort food that warms your soul.
Speaking of comfort food, The Chopping Block is hosting a virtual class for Chicken Pot Pie on November 5th. A flaky blanket of pastry wrapped over a creamy sauce with chicken and veggies, uh, yes please.
And as always, I invite you to join us over at The Chopping Block’s private Facebook group where home cooks and pros alike, share their cooking journeys. See you there.