This is a simple, full-flavored version of tomato soup. I’ve already posted Simply Tomato Soup (with Options) and this is more or less that. But, I’ve tweaked and changed a few things and frankly, simplified the recipe. This is in keeping with our recent discussions of “basic” soups. And really, who doesn’t like a good, simple tomato soup? And this is simply tomato soup, at its best and easiest. If you head over to the Simply Tomato Soup (with Options) post, you’ll find I’m repeating myself here a bit. There are some things worth repeating. You’ll have to just deal with it, okay?
If you use milk, the acid in the tomatoes will probably cause the milk to curdle. Use only whole milk, but even that may curdle. If you use baking soda to neutralize the acid of the tomatoes, that will prevent the milk from curdling. But, baking soda also destroys a heap of vitamin C (a tomato has about 14 mg/100 g of vitamin C or about 1/5 of the RDA for vitamin C), and I have found that if you thicken the soup with either wheat flour or better yet, rice flour, whole milk doesn’t curdle. Nor will heavy cream or evaporated milk.
This is pretty simple, and perfect for a quick dinner. Make The Perfect Grilled Cheese, and you’re all set!
Simply sweat the onions, thyme and allspice, until the onions are softened. Add the tomatoes, tomato paste, and stock. Simmer the whole thing for a few minutes. Add the rice flour and corn, if using. Let that all simmer together for a few more minutes, until it thickens. Add the milk now, if you are using it. Heat just until the soup is about to boil. Pull the pot off the burner, pour into bowls and serve sprinkled with bacon bits, a drizzle of honey and lots of freshly ground black pepper. Oh yeah, and good bread. Dinner is served!
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 tablespoon good quality olive oil
- 1 medium onion, finely chopped (about 1 good cup)
- 1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
- 1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
- 2 teaspoons minced garlic (optional)
- 1 15-ounce can (fire-roasted) diced tomatoes, with their juice
- 2-3 tablespoon tomato paste
- 2-4 cups chicken or vegetable stock (or more as needed)
- Pinch ground allspice
- 3-4 teaspoons rice flour
- 1 cup whole kernel corn, either frozen or canned (optional)
- For service:
- Cooked crumbled bacon
- Red pepper flakes (optional)
- Good bread or crackers
Heat the butter and olive oil in a 4-quart pot over medium heat. Add the onion and the salt; “sweat” the onions for 2 minutes. Add the garlic, thyme, and allspice; continue to sweat for 2 more minutes, stirring occasionally.
Add the tomatoes, their juice, tomato paste and the stock (start with the lesser amount); bring to a simmer; simmer for 10 minutes. Whisk in the rice flour; continue to simmer until the mixture thickens slightly. If you are not using the milk option, use the lesser amount of rice flour. If using, add the corn and simmer for an additional 5 minutes. Pour into large bowls, top with crumbled bacon, a drizzle of honey and good bread.
For Cream of Tomato: Use the lesser amount of broth. Add 1 1/2 cups whole milk or 1/2 cup heavy cream after you thicken the mixture with the rice flour. If you add the milk before, it may curdle. Also, whole milk is essential or it will curdle. This does not affect flavor, but will affect the appearance.
NOTE: If you wish a smooth soup, use an immersion blender right in the pot or pour the tomato soup into a blender and blend until smooth, working in batches, if needed; return to the soup pot. If you want a soup that still has some texture, purée only a portion.
The tomato soup will keep, covered in the refrigerator, for a few days. Reheat gently; do no boil.
Tomato Soup Recipe©Marcia Lahens 2018. All rights reserved.
This soup really just makes itself. You can use frozen chopped onions and they work great in this, because freezing starts to break down the structure, so they are already on their way to becoming soft, so cooking time may be much less. Perfect for an after-work meal.
I mentioned that I would post recipes to use leftover roasted supermarket chicken. This soup kills two birds with one soup (pun intended!). Add the leftover, shredded chicken (and maybe some mashed potatoes and peas, too) at the end of cooking and heat just until heated through. You may want to choose to add cumin or tarragon, depending on what flavor you feel like eating. If you’re going to purée the soup, purée first, then add the leftovers…kind of like, pillage, then burn!
As you can see, I added both whole milk and corn. I served it with good quality ciabatta…it was perfect for a chilly fall day. I usually don’t purée tomato soup, because I like this soup chunky. And I love to add dill, but not this time. The Latin Lover likes his tomato soup with the drizzle of honey and hot, creamy and tomato-y. Life is good!