Creamy Tomato Soup

When I was working from home because of Hurricane Sandy, I made sure to watch as much morning television as possible (you know, The Today Show, Live with Kelly & Michael, Rachael Ray, etc.). While most of the stuff wasn’t worth mentioning, they did have Ina Garten from Barefoot Contessa on The Today Show one morning which immediately caught my attention. She made a few different things for the segment, but the one that really stood out was her tomato soup. I’m not typically a tomato soup fan since most of the kinds I’ve had just tasted like hot tomato juice, but I was willing to give hers a try.

Since our oven has been out of commission, everything I’ve been making has been either on the stove-top, or in the toaster oven. So this soup was perfect, and it paired amazingly with grilled cheese. But not just any grilled cheese – grilled gouda (my absolute favorite) with sautéed red onion and BBQ sauce. I wound up making quite a few modifications to the soup to fit my taste, and it was so delicious. The entire thing can be completed in one pot, in a matter of about 30 minutes. That’s pretty good for a flavorful homemade soup if you ask me! I’m definitely making this again (and the grilled cheese)!

Creamy Tomato Soupinspired by Ina Garten’s Easy Tomato Soup
– serves about 6 –

2 Tbsp olive oil
1 yellow onion, diced
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 14 oz. cans of vegetable broth
1 28oz. can crushed tomatoes
1/2 cup heavy cream
1-2 tsp red pepper flakes (depending on your spice preference)
1 tsp dried basil
Salt & pepper to taste

1. In a large pot over medium heat, add the oil and diced onion and sauté for about 10 minutes, until they’re translucent and starting to brown. Add the minced garlic and cook an additional 2 minutes.
2.  Stir in the vegetable broth, tomatoes, red pepper flakes, basil, salt, and pepper. Let it simmer for about 10 minutes. 
3. Stir in the heavy cream and let it simmer for an additional 5 minutes, stirring frequently.  

Do you have a favorite type of soup? Or one you can’t stand?