19 February 2010

Grilled Cheese & Tomato Soup

The winters are tough down here in Florida. Averaging a frigid 50-something degrees and overcast, a certain couple of northerners are getting a bit antsy. This is the Sunshine state for crying out loud!!!! Where's the sun? Where is the heat? As I type this, I am bundled up with socks and a sweatshirt, and the space heater 2 feet from me. But I digress, I wore a t-shirt and sunglasses yesterday during a 62 degree cloudless afternoon. It's really rough....

As you are read this, I will be back up in the northeast. Way, way up into the 20 degree northeast. The snowy northeast. The cold northeast. Did I say the snowy northeast? I'm trying not to think of it. *gulp*

Speaking of snow, it snowed here Friday. And when I say it snowed I mean that at some point during a rain storm, a few little droplets froze enough to form a snowflake and fall somewhere within the borders of Florida. Oh The Horror!!!! Word of the possibility of snow led to widespread panic throughout the panhandle. Grocery stores were mobbed, schools were closed, offices were closed, the navy was closed (huh?). People stayed inside (once stocking up on milk and bread) to ride out the 'big winter storm of 2010'. I kid you not. It rained here, and not even hard for Florida standards. Schools actually closed completely. Businesses were closed. I didn't see any snow, and there sure wasn't any accumulation. At the stores, that's all the cashiers were talking about, asking us, "did you see the snow today???". My response was sort of a blank stare and eventually something along the lines of, "um...I just moved here from Vermont (I also pull the Maine and Jersey card when appropriate)". Sorry to kill your snow buzz...

Anyway, since it has been a little chilly here, I thought some tomato soup and grilled cheese sandwiches would be nice. About a year or so ago I had this delicious soup during a baking day with Sweet Cheeks
. She whipped up this recipe herself, and now I use it as my go-to tomato soup dish. I've gotten a lot of good recipes from her, it's good to have friends with excellent taste buds!

I'll post the recipe, but honestly, I just eyeball everything. A little of this, a little of that. If you like your tomato soup extra thick and chunky like I do, leave out a little bit of chicken broth. You can always toss it in later if you want. I also add a bit of crushed red pepper to the mix, just to spice things up a bit.

For my grilled cheese, I used some crusty rosemary bread I bought, along with some left over No Knead Bread. Buttering the bread, I then stuffed it with a combination of a spicy Harvarti, Pepper Jack, Brie, and Gouda cheeses. Using my new cast iron griddle, I toasted one side of the sandwich before flipping it over and pressing it down to insure all goodness was melted.

Tomato Soup
Printable Recipe
by Sweet Cheeks in the Kitchen

1 onion
3 cloves minced garlic
2 T butter
3 T flour
2 can vegetable broth
1 big can crushed tomatoes
1 small can diced tomatoes
1 heaping spoon tomato paste
1 t sugar
1/2 cup cream
1 cup alphabet noodles

Melt butter and EVOO over medium high heat. Add onions and saute 7 minutes. Add garlic and saute 2 minutes. Sprinkle with flour cooking 2 more minutes. Stir in broth, all tomatoes, paste, sugar, herbs, and season with S&P. Allow to simmer. About 20 minutes before serving add cream and noodle.

1 comment :

  1. Kacey..I love reading your recipes..what a nice website..I have subscribed..thank you, and great meeting you at beverly's..see you soon..Lynda