what a yummy monday evening treat! we decided to catch up on some shows that were building up on our dvr and wanted something light & comforting for dinner. last night i decided to try my hand at one of my favorite comfort foods– tomato soup & paninis!
ingredients for the tomato soup:
- 1/2 stick of unsalted butter
- 1 medium onion (I prefer red onions)
- 3 cloves of garlic (smashed and minced)
- several sprigs of thyme (easiest to remove later if they are tied together)
- 1/4 cup tomato paste
- 8 cups warm water
- 2 cans peeled whole tomatoes (32 oz cans)
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 1 teaspoon pepper, extra for topping
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
instructions for tomato soup:
- add butter to large stock pot or dutch oven pot on medium heat. the one I used can be purchased at williams sonoma. add diced onion, garlic and bundle of thyme to stock pot. allow the onions to cook until almost translucent. about 15 minutes.
- turn heat up a bit and add tomato paste and 1 tablespoon sugar. cook until the sugar and tomato paste begin to caramelize. about 5 minutes.
- add cans of tomatoes, water and bring to a boil. once it reaches a boil, bring the temperature down to a simmer. simmer for 35-40 minutes until the soup has condensed down a bit.
- add remaining tablespoon of sugar, salt and pepper and remove the bundle of thyme.
- pour the soup into a blender (you can use an immersion blender but I prefer a table blender for this soup) and blend until smooth. return the soup to the pot and bring to a boil. add the heavy whipping cream and let simmer for 3-5 more minutes.
- serve with a parmesan crisp and/ or homemade croutons. top with black pepper.
- ta da!
for homemade croutons: lightly toss diced up hot dog buns (my fave for croutons!) with olive oil and a creole mixture of spices (salt, pepper, paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, cayenne pepper, dried oregano and dried thyme). bake on a cooking sheet for 25 minutes on 375.
for parmesan crisps, heat a teaspoon of oil in a small skillet on medium high, sprinkle in shredded parmesan to lightly coat the bottom of the pan. cook until golden brown then cool down on a paper towel until hardened. or you can cook the parmesan in a paper plate with olive oil in the microwave for faster cooking! (shoutout to hannah byrne for that tip!)
ps- does anything smell more yummy than onions cooking in butter and thyme?