yummy, yummy tomato soup

01 October 2014

I have never liked tomato soup. Actually, I don't know that I had ever really tried tomato soup. I don't like tomatoes plain-- I love salsa, pico, all things of that nature. I also had never eaten a grilled cheese sandwich.....

One day last fall, Brian decided he wanted grilled cheese sandwiches and tomato soup. It sounded like the most miserable meal in the world to me! So I bought a can of tomato soup and googled how to make a grilled cheese. I know, it's easy but I figured there had to be some trick. I suffered through it and it was okay but I was not impressed.

So one day while lunching at Capitol Bar and Grill I decided I wanted the Grilled Pimento Cheese sandwich. Side note-- we had the most amazing Pimento Cheese dip at the Chancellor Hotel last year... AMAZING. Try it. So I figured the sandwich probably wasn't horrible.. it was AMAZING!! So good.

So I got on pinterest and found a similar recipe and figured out I DO like grilled cheese-- when it's made my way. LONG story short-- Erin made this soup and had tons left over, gave us some, heated it up, made a grilled cheese and it was perfect. 
I tried it myself and it is so good!

8 large tomatoes, quartered
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes (or less if you don't want a bit of a kick to it)
1 head of garlic
1 tablespoon butter
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 large yellow onion, chopped
1/2 cup fresh parsley, chopped
1 tablespoon tomato paste
3 cups vegetable broth
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1 piece of whole wheat bread, toasted & cubed
1/4 cup heavy cream (or milk)
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
salt & pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Line a baking sheet with foil.

Combine tomatoes, balsamic vinegar, 2 tablespoons of oil and salt & pepper in a large bowl and toss together.

Spread tomato mixture onto baking sheet.

Cut off the top of the head of garlic, drizzle 1 tablespoon of oil on top and wrap tightly in tin foil. Place garlic on the baking sheet with the tomatoes.

Roast for about 45 minutes.

While tomatoes and garlic are roasting, heat butter and remaining tablespoon of oil in a large heavy bottomed pot over medium heat.

Add onions and garlic and saute until softened, about 5-7 minutes.

Once tomatoes & garlic are done roasting, add them to the pot and continue to cook for another 5 minutes.

Add parsley, broth, tomato paste, brown sugar and cubed bread and simmer for 20-25 minutes uncovered, stirring occasionally.

Add heavy cream and parmesan cheese and stir until combined.

Remove soup from heat and puree with an immersion blender or in batches with a regular blender until creamy.

Season with salt & pepper to taste.

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