In a recent post, I shared a recipe for Grilled Apple and Cheddar Cheese sandwiches. Grilled cheese is a versatile and widely treasured sandwich favorite, but there's nothing better than pairing the sandwich with a bowl of tomato soup.
I'm fairly ambivalent about tomato soup. On one hand, it's often low-calorie and packed with lycopene, a proven antioxidant that is said to help prevent damage to certain cells in the body. On the other hand, if it isn't homemade soup, you're running the risk of slurping a bowl of what tastes like watered down tomato juice.
I found a recipe on Kitchen Parade that defies the definition of the traditional thin, velevet-smooth tomato soup that many of us grew up dipping our grilled cheese sandwiches in (with of course, the except of those who prefer ketchup).
This version of tomato soup incorporates chunky tomatoes and sliced leeks to add depth and flavor that you don't usually get from a tomato soup. Tomato lovers will be hooked - you might toss that can of Progresso and never look back.
Winter Tomato Soup
2 large cans (28 ounces each) diced tomatoes
1 tablespoon brown sugar
2 tablespoons butter
2 leeks, white and green parts only, trimmed, halved lengthwise, washed well, sliced into half moons
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
2 tablespoons flour
2 cups vegetable or other broth
1. Set oven to 475F. Drain tomatoes in a colander, reserving the juice. Arrange tomatoes in single layer on a rimmed baking sheet. Sprinkle with brown sugar and roast for 20 minutes plus whatever preheating time remains.
2. Meanwhile, melt butter on medium heat in large pot or Dutch oven (oven-proof if finishing in the oven). Add leeks and sauté until golden, stirring often. Stir in tomato paste, nutmeg and flour; cook for a minute, stirring. Slowly add the broth, stirring to incorporate each addition before adding more. Stir in roasted tomatoes and reserved tomato juice.
3. For a quicker meal, cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally for about forty-five minutes to an hour. If you have some extra time, a slower simmer really brings out the flavor in these tomatoes. Cover and let barely simmer for 3 hours. Serves 6-8. (For original recipe, nutritional information and slow-cooker or oven instructions visit Alanna at Kitchen Parade.