Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Creamless Tomato Soup

There is nothing that screams comfort to me more than a grilled cheese sandwich and bowl of tomato soup. Except maybe eating that curled up on the couch with the dogs and a good book. And a glass of wine. Perfect scenario!

This tomato soup tastes smooth and creamy despite it's lack of cream, or any dairy at all (although, I added a few drops as a garnish). It is also surprisingly filling. A perfectly healthy and delicious soup for the fall and winter.

¼ cup extra virgin olive oil, plus extra for drizzling, divided
1 medium onion, chopped (about 1 cup)
3 medium garlic cloves, chopped
1 teaspoon hot red pepper flakes, or more to taste
1 bay leaf
2 (28-ounce) cans whole tomatoes in juice
1 tablespoon brown sugar
3 large slices good-quality white sandwich bread, crusts removed, torn into 1-inch pieces
2 cups chicken broth (or vegetable broth, to make it vegetarian
2 tablespoons brandy (optional)
Salt and pepper to taste
¼ cup chopped fresh basil

Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a dutch oven or large pot over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add onion, garlic, red pepper flakes and bay leaf. Cook, stirring frequently, until onion is translucent, 3 to 5 minutes.

Stir in tomatoes and their juices. Using a potato masher, mash tomatoes until pieces are no bigger than 2 inches. Stir in sugar and bread. Bring soup to a boil then reduce heat to medium. Cook, stirring occasionally, until bread begins to break down, about 5 minutes. Remove bay leaf and discard.

Add 2 tablespoons olive oil and blend soup using an immersion blender, until smooth and creamy, about 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in chicken broth and brandy, return soup to a boil. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Garnish with fresh basil, and drizzle with olive oil. Serve with grilled cheese. Makes roughly 4-6 servings.


kathleen @ the lushers said... [Reply to comment]

Oh, yum! It's a soup kind of day here!

I bookmarked this to make soon. Sounds so good, and not much harder than heating up canned soup!

Heather said... [Reply to comment]

This is one of my favorites...

Kirsten (peacefuldog) said... [Reply to comment]

Holy moly, that looks so delicious! Tomato soup is one of my faves--even better with a grilled nutritional yeast "cheese" sandwich :)

Looks like you have some very nice diverse recipes here, many veg-friendly. I'll be coming back!

kiwsparks said... [Reply to comment]

So very lovely, but to be fair, should brandy ever be merely 'optional'? ;)

Christina said... [Reply to comment]

@kiwsparks Hmm, good point. ;)

in my kitchen | in my studio said... [Reply to comment]

i love the colour, vibrant, fresh and healthy! *writes down on her to do list* thanks for sharing!

Lauren said... [Reply to comment]

Just saw this on foodgawker, delicious!

foodie @ Tasting Spot said... [Reply to comment]

that looks soo fresh and healthy... love your pictures

Anonymous said... [Reply to comment]

I just made this soup today!!! It was soooo delicious, and definitely had a good kick to it. Thank u for this wonderful recipe. Looooved the idea of cooking bread into it. Nice way to use up your not-too-fresh breads! Yum!

Madre Minutes said... [Reply to comment]

How does having the grilled cheese along with it keep it dairy free? Also what if you are not doing sugar either.....what can you sub for the brown sugar? Agave? THanks for the tip.

Christina said... [Reply to comment]

@Madre Minutes This recipe is for the soup only, which is dairy-free. Choose what you serve it alongside based on your dietary needs. For a completely dairy-free meal try a salad or a cheese-free panini.

I like to use Splenda brown sugar for a sugar-free substitute in cooking and baking.

Abigail said... [Reply to comment]

This is awesome! Of course much better then making the canned version with water! You are correct, it is very filling and nice to have on these colder days especially for lunches. Thanks for sharing!

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