easier tomato soup

Easier Tomato Soup

Tomato soup might be the perfect food. It tastes good with grilled cheese, you can put hot sauce in it and you can drink it out of a mug when you run out of clean spoons and bowls (which happens around here more than I would like to admit).

I really like the carton of tomato soup I buy at Trader Joe’s and bonus, Six will eat it. I also love the homemade tomato soup I make from Contessa Garten’s excellent recipe, which I have changed over time to suit my taste. 

Is there a halfway point between the carton and Contessa Garten?

I found a recipe that seems a little simpler so I decided to try it and see. It had to do two…no, three things.

  1. It has to be easier than the Contessa Garten recipe
  2. Six has to eat it
  3. It has to taste better than the carton

Easy, right?


Six would not touch it and it wasn’t that much easier than Contessa Garten’s. I looked up her recipe and it is really easy, except for the hilarious amount of onions you have to chop. So as much as I liked the recipe I tried, I cannot recommend it. What I will do is rerun my version of Contessa Garten’s recipe along with a picture of the soup I made just because it was pretty.

That is all.

3 tablespoons olive oil

1 and 1 half cups yellow onions, chopped (1 onion)

1 tablespoon minced garlic (3 cloves)

4 cups chicken stock

1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

1/2 cup orzo

1/2 cup milk (if you don’t have whole milk or want it richer, add a couple tablespoons of butter as well as the milk)

  1. In a large pot or Dutch oven, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onions and cook over medium-low heat for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until golden brown. Add the garlic and cook for 1 more minute. Stir in the chicken stock, tomatoes, 1 tablespoon salt and 1 teaspoon pepper. Bring the soup to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer for 15 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, fill a medium pot with water, add 2 teaspoons salt and bring to a boil. Add the orzo and cook for 7 minutes. (It will finish cooking in the soup.) Drain the orzo and add it to the soup. Stir in the milk (and butter if you want it), return the soup to a simmer and cook for 10 more minutes, stirring frequently.
  3. Top with shredded parmesan cheese or fresh basil if you have it.
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