My favorite lunches as a child almost always would’ve involved Cream of Tomato Soup. You know, the condensed kind in the can. I didn’t want anyone ever messing with it either; even late into adulthood. I just wanted it straight-up, with the additional can of milk and you better not be making it fancy with basil or anything! Just tomato goodness, warm and in a soup bowl please (or mug, I am flexible).
The older I got though, the more it seemed to irritate me, particularly my throat. I found I was coughing whenever I ate it and my tastes seemed to change. I no longer enjoyed it.
That’s when I started making my own version since it really is a simple idea. For years now, I have “winged” it, never making the same thing twice. But recently, I decided that I should probably make it an official recipe, especially since I now have a blog.
This isn’t exactly like the kind in the can, but it is a rich tomato flavor and that’s what I want when I eat tomato soup 🙂
- 1 small onion, diced
- 1 large carrot, diced
- 1 celery stalk, diced
- 3 to 5 tomatoes, diced
- 14.5 oz can of tomatoes (I used fire-roasted diced tomatoes)
- 1 to 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tsp better than bouillon + 2.5 cups of water or 2.5 cups of broth
- 2 Tbsp tomato paste
- 1 Tbsp sugar (or coconut sugar — what I used — or sweetener of your choice)
- 1 tsp sweet chili sauce or siracha (optional)
- 1/2 tsp dried thyme
- Salt & pepper to taste
- ¾ cup heavy cream
- More water as needed for your preferred consistency
Serves about 5 to 6 (depending on size of bowls)
Heat a little bit of oil in the bottom of a pan. Add the diced onion, celery and carrot. Cook until tender. About 5 to 10 minutes.
Add the garlic and cook until just fragrant… 30 seconds should do it. Don’t burn the garlic. This is one recipe where I don’t use more garlic.
Add the diced tomatoes quickly once the garlic is fragrant and let that cook until juice starts to release. Tomatoes like salt, so I added a little salt at this point as well.
Add the rest of the ingredients, EXCEPT the heavy cream and extra water. Simmer on low, covered for about half an hour to 45 minutes until all ingredients are well cooked down. If you want to thicken it a bit, take the lid off for a little while.
To get a smooth consistency, use a blender or an immersion blender. I don’t have a real blender, so I use an immersion blender, and I love mine! I make a lot of vegetable soups (like asparagus soup) and it’s really handy.
At this point, add the heavy cream and if you feel it needs to be thinned out, some water or broth. Taste for salt and pepper.
Even with adding the cream to the whole batch, it reheated beautifully.
I saved half of the batch and froze half of the batch for later.
One of my favorite accompaniments to creamy tomato soup is a grilled cheese. At the moment, I work very close to home, so I come home for lunch pretty much daily. However, that will be changing soon as I am about to change jobs. The opportunities are much better… but the locations are not close to home. I sure will miss grilled cheese and tomato soup for lunch during the week! Oh well, the weekends will have to suffice 🙂