Roasted Tomato Soup with Cheese Toasts

Mar 22, 2014

Is there a more classic lunch combination than tomato soup with grilled cheese? Here, roasted tomatoes are turned into a flavourful soup, topped with gooey open-faced cheese toasts that act as lids; alternatively, melt and serve them alongside the soup.

Roasted Tomato Soup

canola or olive oil, for cooking
12-15 plum or Roma tomatoes, halved lengthwise
1 tbsp (15 ml) butter
1 onion, peeled and chopped
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1-2 tsp (5-10 ml) fresh thyme
1 28 oz. (796 ml) can San Marzano-style or diced tomatoes, with their juices
4 cups (1 L) chicken or vegetable stock
1/2 cup (125 ml) half & half or heavy (whipping) cream
salt and pepper, to taste

Cheese Toasts

6 thick slices crusty bread
butter (optional)
grated aged cheddar or Parmesan cheese, or a combination

Preheat the oven to 450˚F. Spread the tomatoes out in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet lined with parchment or foil; drizzle with oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast for 20-30 minutes, until soft and starting to turn golden. In a medium pot set over medium-high heat, heat another drizzle of oil along with the butter and sauté the onion for 3-4 minutes, until soft. Add the garlic and thyme and cook for another minute. Add the roasted and canned tomatoes along with the chicken stock. Bring to a simmer and let cook for 20 minutes, or until the tomatoes are very soft. Remove from the heat, add the cream and purée with a hand-held immersion blender in the pot. (Alternatively, carefully transfer to a blender to purée until smooth.) Season with salt and pepper and divide between oven-proof bowls or ramekins set on a rimmed baking sheet.Toast the bread - if it's thick, it's easy to do in the preheated oven. Butter it if you like, and sprinkle generously with cheese. Float a cheese toast atop each soup and place in the oven for 5 minutes, or until bubbly and golden. (If you like, turn on the broiler for a minute or two to speed up the process.) Serve immediately.
Serves 6. 
Per serving: 330 calories, 11.6 g fat (5.3 g saturated fat, 4.5 g monounsaturated fat, 1.7 g polyunsaturated fat), 42.5 g carbohydrates, 25 mg cholesterol, 13.5 g protein, 4.5 g fibre.

Originally published in ParentsCanada magazine, November 2013.

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