One of my favorite all time meals is tomato soup and grilled cheese sandwiches. Suddenly, I’m a happy five-year-old all over again. This pantry delight comes from Maggiano’s Italian-American restaurant. I found this recipe years ago from my local paper and finally convinced Jason that he would like it. The finicky eater hates tomatoes.
This is a thick and velvety soup with undertones of onion and garlic. The sharp tomato is scaled done with the addition of cream. The hubby ended up really liking it. I saw him sneaking dunks of Parmesan toast into the soup while it was simmering.
Maggiano’s Country-Style Tomato Soup With Parmesan Toasts
2 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 small yellow onions, diced
2 medium garlic cloves, chopped
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup water or chicken stock
3 cups tomato puree
2 tablespoons tomato paste
2 cups half-and-half
3 / 4 cup chopped canned plum tomatoes
3 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
Salt and fresh-ground black pepper, to taste
8 Parmesan Toasts (recipe given), for garnish
In a nonreactive large saucepan, melt the butter with the olive oil over medium heat.
When hot, add the onions and saute about 3 minutes or until translucent. Add the garlic and saute about 1 1 / 2 minutes. Add the flour and cook, stirring, about 3 minutes.
Slowly add the water or chicken stock, tomato puree and tomato paste. Bring to a simmer, reduce the heat, if necessary, and cook at a slow simmer, stirring occasionally, 10 minutes. Add the half-and-half, return to a simmer and cook 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Remove the soup from the heat and let cool 15 to 20 minutes. In a blender or food processor fitted with the metal blade, puree the soup in several batches, transferring each batch to a clean nonreactive saucepan.( I was lazy so I used my emulsion blender in the saucepan).
When all is pureed and in the saucepan, return the pan to the stove and stir in the chopped canned plum tomatoes, the basil, salt and pepper . Return to a simmer over medium heat and let cook 5 minutes.
To serve, divide the soup among 8 warm serving bowls and garnish each with a Parmesan Toast. Makes 8 servings.
8 French baguette slices (about 3 / 4 inch thick by 3 inches in diameter)
1 tablespoon olive oil
3 tablespoons fresh-grated parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
Preheat oven to 350. Brush each baguette slice with a scant 1 / 2 teaspoon olive oil. Divide the cheese and basil among the bread slices. Toast untill the cheese is melted. Makes 8 slices.