Burrrrrr! It’s been cold outside so I’ve TOTALLY been in the mood for soup! I kind of want it every day. I love tomato soup and I’ve been dying to try American’s Test Kitchen’s (ATK’s) method of making it creamy. It didn’t disappoint and I loved that it made a nice big pot so I could enjoy it as my carbohydrate side dish for a few days.
So, this recipe rocks and I must tell you why. It has FABULOUS tomato flavor and is creamy without adding cream (most creamy tomato soups will come in around 300-450 calories per cup, but not this one!). Quite honestly, the cream generally dulls the tomato flavor. ATK figured out that if you add bread to the soup, it achieves a creamy texture. Interesting, eh? I thought so. Thus, I just HAD to try it. When the bread breaks down and is blended into the soup, it adds creaminess and helps to temper the acidity of the tomatoes. It also helps thicken the soup to just the right consistency.
You might also find it odd that we use canned tomatoes in this recipe. ATK has tested using fresh tomatoes versus canned tomatoes, and no kidding, the canned tomatoes give the best flavor result.
Also, one other little trick to the soup is to puree the tomato soup with a little extra-virgin olive oil Adding it to the soup during this stage helps to ramp up the flavor and the flavor remains clean and fresh. Plus, while blending, the oil is fully incorporated into the soup.
I’m telling you, ATK is all business and I’m pretty darn impressed with this soup thanks to the easy methods applied. (It was even a little easier for me since I have a stick immersion blender and could blend it right in my soup pot.) If you love tomato soup, you gotta try this!!
Creamy Tomato Soup Without the Cream
Adapted from “The America’s Test Kitchen Healthy Family Cookbook”
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, divided
1 onion, minced
3 garlic cloves, minced
pinch red pepper flakes
1 bay leaf
2 (28-ounce) cans diced tomatoes
1 tablespoon brown sugar
3 sliced high-quality white sandwich bread, crusts removed, torn into 1-inch pieces
2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
2 tablespoons red cooking wine (I used Sherry)
salt and pepper
Multi-Grain Saltines, for serving (optional)
Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a large Dutch oven (or heavy duty stock pot) over medium heat until shimmering. Add the onion, garlic, red pepper flakes, and bay leaf and cook until the onion is softened, about 5 minutes.
Stir in the tomatoes with their juice. Stir in the sugar and bread, bring to a simmer, and cook until the bread begins to dissolve, about 5 minutes.
Discard the bay leaf. Puree the soup with the remaining 2 tablespoons oil in a blender, in batches, until smooth. Return the soup to a clean pot, stir in the broth and red cooking wine, and cook gently over medium0low heat until the soup is hot. Season with salt and pepper to taste. If desired, serve with multi-grain Saltine crackers.
Nutritional Information (Per Serving = Approx. 1 Cup Soup)
Fat: 6.6g (1g = Sat)