Monday, March 15, 2010

Grilled Cheese Sandwich and Cream of Tomato Soup

Possibly the perfect meal when it's been raining all weekend.

A childhood favorite, but made with cheddar and asiago cheese on homemade bread instead of Kraft Singles on Wonder Bread.  Also:  my new favorite tomato soup.  Of all time. 
The soup recipe is adapted from How to Cook Everything;  the sandwich recipe is below if you'd like instructions for grilled cheese.

For two servings of soup:

1 T butter
2 T tomato paste
2 shallots, sliced
1 small carrot, diced
1 14 oz. can of diced tomatoes
1/4 t dried or 1/2 t fresh thyme
1/2 c. cream or half-and-half
up to 1 t sugar
salt and pepper to taste

1.  Melt the butter in medium-sized pot over medium heat.  Add tomato paste; let it cook for a minute.  Add carrot and shallots; cook for another 5 minutes or until shallots soften.

2.  Add the can of tomatoes and thyme; cook for another 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until tomatoes start to break up.  Add cream and blend.   (As ever, this would be easier with a stick blender.  If, like me, you don't have one, a bar blender works!)

Add sugar, salt, and pepper to taste.  If it's too thick, blend in a little milk.  Bring temperature back to just simmering. 

For two sandwiches:

4 slices bread
2 T butter
1/3 lb. cheese, sliced 

1.  Butter four slices of high-quality bread (I used this, but in loaf form.  I apparently haven't posted a recipe for white bread yet.)

2.   Assemble the sandwich:  put buttered sides out, and three or four slices of any sort of sandwich cheese on the inside.

3.  Cook over low heat until cheese is melted and bread is golden brown; flip and toast the second side.

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