Our house is currently the sick ward. Little C recently started preschool, which means germs galore! When I’m sick with a cold, all I want is hot soup, and this recipe from my amazing friend Bridgette seriously hit the spot; plus it’s so easy to make that even a current invalid like myself can pull it together. If you are vegan, lactose-intolerant, vegetarian, etc. then just omit the “optional” ingredients that don’t work for you. I made our soup last night with dried basil (A TON), chicken stock, no sugar, and a tiny bit of half&half. It would be just as good with veggie stock and no dairy! Bonus-this soup is packed with vitamins and lycopene, thanks to the mighty tomatoes!
So what’s the big deal about tomatoes?These precious veggies are packed with vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. Canned tomatoes are often found to actually have more highly concentrated levels of beneficial nutrients than their fresh counterparts (but that shouldn’t stop you from eating raw ones too)! Tomatoes contain high levels of carotenoids, a type of antioxidant which protects cells in the body from damage caused by oxidative free radicals. In particular, tomatoes are one of the richest sources of a carotenoid called lycopene. Lycopene can lower the risk of certain types of cancer, such as prostate, breast, and stomach cancers. High in levels of vitamins A, C, E and K and the B-complex vitamins, magnesium, potassium, manganese, copper and chromium, tomatoes (and tomato soup) are a great way to kick the sicky blues and get you feeling back to normal ASAP.Ingredients:
- 2 (14 oz) cans crushed tomatoes
- 1 (28 oz) can whole peeled tomatoes (include juice in soup)
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 3 cloves garlic
- 2 cups veggie or chicken stock
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp pepper
- 1 tsp sugar (optional)
- 1/4 cup heavy cream or half&half (optional)
- Fresh or dried basil (I used 3 tbsp dried basil)
How to do it:
- Add oil and garlic to warm saucepan and cook until garlic sizzles (make sure not to burn it!).
- Pour in crushed, then whole tomatoes. Use your hands to mash the whole tomatoes before you drop them in the pan, turning the heat up to medium-high so that soup is simmering.
- Add stock, salt, pepper, sugar, and dried or fresh basil (I suggest julienning the basil leaves).
- Add cream or half&half last, stirring constantly to keep soup from burning.
- Next part is up to you-you can either let the soup simmer on low until dinner is ready, or eat it right away!