Homemade Tomato Soup


Last year, I caught the worst flu imaginable. From Bobby. He’d just finished radiation for the cancer and so I was REALLY taking care of him, around him and his flu 24/7.
Therefore, the day that he finally feeling better was the day I came down with the same thing. And was relegated to the guest bedroom for the duration of my illness, because he could NOT get sick again. Lonely and feeling terrible, I begged and pleaded for Campbell’s chicken and stars. He begrudgingly ran to the store to get it (Condensed soup? IN HIS HOME?! GASP.), made it, then left it right inside the guest bedroom door, which was about as close as he’d get to me at the time.
I was so sick that I don’t even remember how I managed to get the bowl next to my bed. All I remember was thinking “this soup is really salty” before passing out for 12 hours. 
The next morning, I croaked to Bobby, who spoke to me (through the door).
"Bobs."
"Yeah, Linds?"
"Thanks for the soup."
"No problem."
"One question. Did you happen to add anything to it while you were heating it up?"
"Like what?"
"Like water."
"No. Was I supposed to do that?"
"…"
I’m probably pre-hypertensive as a result of that sodium intake.
So, when I made tomato soup the other day, I had to assure the joker that it was from scratch, not from a can. Here’s how I did it:
(FAST) Homemade Tomato Soup
Ingredients:
2 fresh tomatoes
2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
1 large onion
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 (28-oz) can of crushed tomatoes
3 cups no-sodium chicken broth (can add more or not use the full 3 cups, depending on your desired consistency)
1 tsp. salt (set aside more to season to taste)
1 tsp. pepper (set aside more to season to taste)
1 tsp. cayenne pepper (optional)
3 tbsp. heavy cream
1 tbsp. granulated sugar 
Directions:
In a saucepan, boil water on your stove. When at a rolling boil, add your two fresh tomatoes. Cook until the skin splits, then immediately remove from water. Discard saucepan and water, then peel the skin off of the tomatoes. Slice into medallions. Set aside.
Heat oil in a pot large enough to cook your soup. Dice the onion, then add to hot oil. When the onion is translucent, add the garlic and saute’ for two minutes. 
Add the fresh tomatoes, the crushed tomatoes, the chicken broth, and all the seasoning. Cover and bring to boil for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Lower the heat to low/medium, then pour soup into a blender (food processor is NOT needed). Be sure the lid and center cap are on tight, then blend on medium to high until completely puréed.
Pour the soup back into the pot (BE CAREFUL, Y’ALL. THAT STUFF IS HOT.), then add the cream and sugar.
Stir until combined, then taste-test it. I tend to add a little more salt and a little more cayenne at this point. 
A SECRET: If you really want your tomato soup to taste fabulous…add 1 1/2 tablespoons of butter. Or more (but not too much more. I’d go with 2 tablespoons, max, for this recipe).

A HEALTHY SECRET: If you’re looking to make the soup healthier (and don’t mind losing some of the strong tomato taste)…I have a simple recipe amendment: Add 2 chopped carrots and 2 chopped stalks of celery to the pot at the same time you add the fresh tomatoes. If you do this, be sure to cover the pot and let them soften for an additional 5-6 minutes, then allow the soup to boil for an additional 5-10 minutes before you 
purée.
Of course…no tomato soup is complete without an accompanying grilled cheese sandwich. Whole wheat bread, low-fat cheese and a few minutes on my Lean Mean Grilling Machine made this soup unbelievably delicious. 
Enjoy!

Lindsay

Lindsay Sweeting was in the world of Marketing and Publicity in her previous life. These days you're more likely to see her running after her toddler than running a meeting, but she does her best to find time to create new recipes, come up with fun activities for her daughter, and write about the craziness that is life in the Sweeting house.

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