I came across this amazing recipe for dairy-free tomato basil soup (link below) at the end of our tomato growing season when I was desperately searching for a way to use up our rapidly decaying tomatoes without pulling out the canning equipment. I wish I loved canning more but I just don’t. I much prefer to freeze food which is what I did with the several batches of this that I made.
I am so glad that I decided not to can that day because this has become my new go-to tomato soup recipe. And what makes it even better is that you can cook it in your Instant Pot. If you haven’t got an Instant Pot yet, why not?
A few weeks ago, after the weather had turned cooler, I hosted a work lunch for about 12 people. I was able to cook up two batches of this amazing soup in about an hour and a half. Served alongside my sourdough grilled cheese sandwiches, I knew it was a hit when people started dipping their sandwiches in the soup! Pure comfort food! No one even noticed it wasn’t cream-based and I felt sort of noble slipping in those hidden veggies. (Fun fact: You can get vegan Worcestershire Sauce if you want a vegan version.) Of course, the grilled cheese more than made up the difference on the lack of dairy in the soup.
Speaking of grilled cheese, do you know the secret to an amazing grilled cheese? It’s not complicated. Good bread, a couple of kinds of melty cheeses, a thin layer of mayo on the inside of the bread with a generous pat of butter spread on the outside before toasting on the griddle. That’s it! My top cheese combo is sharp cheddar with havarti but I have used so many different cheeses that work well together so feel free to experiment. My friend Kirstin makes this amazing cranberry sauce every Thanksgiving and gives me her leftovers which I proceed to freeze in ice cube trays for use throughout the year inside my sandwiches. You might also add a fresh slice of tomato and fresh basil inside the sandwich for a twist. I’ve even done a grilled cheese bar where people assemble and cook their own favorite combination.
Nothing makes me think of winter more than the traditional grilled cheese with tomato soup!
What is your go-to meal for the winter?
*Feature image by joffi from Pixabay