Posted by: Deana | February 24, 2009

Tomato Soup and Grilled Cheese

Last night we had tomato soup with grilled cheese sandwiches.  The sandwiches were made with homemade french bread; Z put Muenster cheese on his and I used white cheddar that had been aged for over two years, and a couple of tiny slices of muenster because I couldn’t resist.  The thing I miss most about being lactose intolerant is the cheese, no question, don’t even have to think about it – I can work with lactose free milk, I can live without ice cream (shocking, I know, luckily my sisters-in-law haven’t quite disowned me because of this), I can even find a great recipe for tomato soup that doesn’t contain diary, but living without cheese has been a sad adjustment for me.  If ever I’m tempted to take my chances with lactose, it’s for cheese.

Through lots of research, I learned that when cheese is aged naturally for two years or more, it is essentially lactose free because the aging process had broken down nearly all the lactose.  The trace amounts  of lactose left are usually not a problem.  So we splurge and buy the expensive two-year old cheese that we find (not many) mostly Parmesan and cheddar.  But cheddar that’s been aged over two years is quite potent, so I’ve learned to use it with caution.  So my sandwich last night was mostly white cheddar with just a little bit of muenster to tone down the cheddar flavor a bit.

I found a great Classic Tomato Soup recipe that didn’t call for any milk or cream on the blog Confections of a Foodie Bride; she got the recipe from Martha Stewart.  The Confections of a Foodie Bride recipe I used serves 3, and the original Martha Stewart recipe she based hers off of serves 6.  Since there’s only two of us, I was grateful to find the recipe already sized down.  It’s delicious, easy, and certainly something Z and I look forward to making again.

Classic Tomato Soup

  • 2 Tbsp butter
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 medium onion, chopped
  • Coarse salt and ground pepper
  • 2 Tbsp cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 Tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 sprig fresh thyme (I added extra, since we both like thyme)
  • 14 1/2 oz reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 28 oz crushed San Marzano tomatoes
  • 2 Tbsp fresh basil, chopped (I also added extra basil – love fresh basil)

In a 5-quart saucepan or Dutch oven, melt butter over medium heat; add oil and onion, and season with salt and pepper. Cook until onion is translucent, about 5 minutes. Stir in flour and tomato paste; cook 1 minute.

To saucepan, add thyme, broth, and tomatoes, breaking up tomatoes with your fingers. Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer, 30 minutes. Remove thyme sprig.

Using an immersion blender, puree the soup in the pot or transfer the soup to a conventional blender and puree until mostly smooth; return to pot. Season with salt and pepper and stir in fresh basil. Serve immediately. Crushed Club Crackers and grilled cheese sandwich optional.

Yields: 3 servings



  1. This is my favorite tomato soup recipe now. We’re actually having it for dinner (again) tonight!

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