It’s cold today. COLD. Twenty degrees F, to be exact. It’s soup weather! Last night when I served this, it was six degrees, and “felt like” eighty gazillion below zero(that last fact has not been verified by anyone but me). And what’s more comforting and hearty than tomato soup with a grilled cheese sandwich on the side? Well, I’m sure everyone has their favorite, but for me, this one’s right up there at the top of the list! My family loves Campbell’s Tomato Soup, but I haven’t bought any in a long time because it has high fructose corn syrup. No one needs that. So I grabbed some stuff and made my own.
Looking at the ingredients on the CS can, you’ll see tomato puree, water, HFCS, wheat flour, salt, vegetable oil, flavoring, ascorbic acid and citric acid. Not hard to duplicate, but that soup has that certain something, doesn’t it? I dropped the flour, salt and oil, and the two acids. “Flavoring” came in the use of vegetable stock instead of water, and a bit of garlic powder, because garlic makes everything better. What you’re left with is a velvety soup with hints of vegetables, and that telltale hint of sweet that you get from the corn syrup they use.
Give it a taste after you add the butter, and I’m pretty sure you won’t need salt--I didn’t need any. If you find it too velvety, add another 1/2 cup of broth, and up to 1/2 cup more if you feel you want it thinner. I’m biased, of course, but I thought it was perfect as is. Our grilled cheese sandwiches were simply Black Forest ham, sharp cheddar and thinly sliced tomatoes. A match made in comfort food heaven!
Simple Tomato Soup (Campbell's Copycat)
Makes just about 9 cups (2 1/4 quarts)
1 (26 oz) box of Pomi Strained Tomatoes (you can use a 28 oz can if you can't find Pomi)
1 (6 oz) can tomato paste
5 cups vegetable broth
1/2 tsp garlic powder
3 tbsp sugar
2 tbsp butter
In a medium soup pot, heat the strained tomatoes, tomato paste, vegetable broth, garlic powder and sugar over low- medium heat. Stir occasionally to make sure that the tomato paste and sugar are dissolving.
When the paste and sugar are incorporated, add the butter and stir till melted. Serve in mugs with grilled cheese sandwiches and some kind of cheesy cracker, because that's the law.
Store any leftovers in the fridge.