Monday, January 7, 2013

Easy Tomato Soup & Grilled Cheese Croutons

Mmmmmm!  When I first read those words on the page, I knew this would be one of the first recipes that I made for my family.  In case you haven't noticed, soup has been really popular around here lately, and any way that I can get more tomatoes in to my fellas makes me a happy gal!  This recipe is comfort food in a bowl, that will take you back to the days of eating canned tomato soup, but it is much more sophisticated.  This recipe is on page 56 of Barefoot Contessa Foolproof.  You should give it a try, you WON'T be sorry that you did!

Tomatoes, onions, garlic, chicken stock, and pasta.  What could possible be bad about that?

Home bubblin' pot of yummy!

Adding a little heavy cream never hurt anyone, right?

Time to make the croutons!

Plate it all up!

Now enjoy the deliciousness!

All I can say is that this was really delicious!  The saffron totally makes the soup, so if you don't have the saffron, step away from the recipe.  If the cost of saffron seems prohibitive, try looking for it at TJ Maxx, they usually have little jars of it on the cheap, and they are always fine quality. 

There were two things that I did different.  First, I mistakenly grabbed a can of Trader Joe's Marinara instead of crushed tomatoes.  After reading the ingredients on the can, I decided to just go with it, and I have total faith that it didn't change the taste of the soup any.  Second, I could not find Gruyere cheese anywhere, all I could find was smoked Gruyere   I decided that the smokiness might not play well with the saffron, so I opted to make the croutons with a cheddar and mozzarella  blend.  There is NO doubt in my mind that the Gruyere would have made this already terrific dish even better, so next time I will make sure that I have it on hand, but my improvised croutons were still a big hit.  One other little minor thing that I did, to make it more appealing to my kiddo, I used star shaped pasta instead of orzo.  Worked like a charm.  First time the kid has ever asked if he can take leftover soup in his lunch!

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