Tag Archives: vegetable soup

Cream of Fresh Tomato Soup

fresh tomato soup tabled

A Time for Everything
Ecclesiastes 3:1-8

For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven:

a time to be born, and a time to die;
a time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted;
a time to kill, and a time to heal;
a time to break down, and a time to build up;
a time to weep, and a time to laugh;
a time to mourn, and a time to dance;
a time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together;
a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;
a time to seek, and a time to lose;
a time to keep, and a time to cast away;
a time to tear, and a time to sew;
a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;
a time to love, and a time to hate;
a time for war, and a time for peace.

As we begin to leave the dogs days of summer I always think of this Bible scripture.  It is one of my favorites. I love change and the changes between the seasons is no exception.  Many parts of the United States has had an unseasonably cool summer and here in Tennessee we have had many summer days with temperatures in the low 80’s which is highly uncommon.  I loved every minute of it.

fresh tomato soup ladled
When our summer garden started winding down we had a cool and rainy day just perfect for some soup.  I normally would have waited until well into September to spring soup on the family, but the summer tomatoes were sitting on the counter and a creamy fresh tomato soup beckoned to be made.

I used a recipe I found on The Food Network and it turned out wonderfully tasty, filled to the brim with flavor and creamy as can be. I changed up the recipe slightly by pouring the cooked soup into my blender and giving it a good whirl before adding the cream and heating it before serving.   I don’t mind a few small nuggets of veggies and tomatoes in my cream soup but I don’t like chunks.  By blending it the soup will still have lots of flavor, small bits of color, and the creaminess a cream soup should have.

Bag of roma tomatoes
By the way — many of you may already know this but I only learned this summer that fresh tomatoes can be washed and placed in a plastic bag and stored in the freezer until ready to use.  The cool thing about this is when you take the frozen tomatoes out of the freezer and run them under hot water, the skins just slip right off.  Then the rest of the tomato can be sliced up for easy use.  I have bagged 15 gallon bags of Roma tomatoes this summer to use in soups and recipes this winter!

Have you started making any soup yet this season? Maybe you will want to start with this one!

Happy Cooking!

Cream of Fresh Tomato Soup
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
A creamy soup perfect for fresh vegetables right out of the garden!
Serves: 5 to 6 servings
  • 3 tablespoons good olive oil, can used flavored such as basil olive oil
  • 1½ cups chopped red onions (about 2 small onions)
  • 2 carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic (3 cloves)
  • 4 pounds vine-ripened tomatoes, peeled and coarsely chopped (about 5 large or 10 Roma)
  • 1½ teaspoon sugar
  • ¼ cup packed chopped fresh basil leaves, or 1 tablespoon dried basil
  • 3 cups chicken stock
  • 1 tablespoon Kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
  • ¾ cup heavy cream
  • Croutons, for garnish
  1. Heat olive oil in a large, heavy-bottomed pot over medium-low heat. Add the onions and carrots and saute for about 10 minutes, until very tender. Add the garlic and cook for another minute.
  2. Add tomatoes, sugar, basil, chicken stock, salt and pepper and stir well. Bring the soup to a boil, lower the heat and simmer, uncovered, for 30 minutes or until the tomatoes are very tender.
  3. Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly. Add soup to a blender at about 2 cups at a time. Keep the blender lid slightly skewed to let the heat escape. Pulse the soup off and on for a minute to puree. Do the same with remaining soup. Pour everything back into the pot and slowly reheat adding heavy cream. Reheat just until hot.
  4. Garnish with croutons and enjoy!
Adapted from Barefoot Contessa, The Food Network


Saturday’s Soup: 9 Can Vegetable Soup

I am a soup snob. There, I’ve said it and it is true. I don’t like soup out of a can.  I never use to even eat soup, unless I made it myself. (Snob) Not Campbells, Progresso, just-like-home made, none of it.
Then one day I received a newsletter from my health insurance carrier.  Inside the newsletter was a recipe for 9 Can Vegetable Soup with the advertisement: Try this simple and delicious vegetable soup

I scanned the list of “cans” and wasn’t interested until I saw this nutritional info.
Servings per recipe 12
Per Serving:
Calories: 127.8
Total Fat: 0.8 g
Cholesterol: 2.4 mg
Sodium 602.9: mg
Total Carbs:  25.9g
Dietary Fiber: 4.9g
Protein: 5.1g

In my book those stats make for a pretty healthy main dish. I also started thinking about the convenience of keeping these 9 cans on the pantry shelf and having a meal ready in the flash of a can opener!  During the holidays — after a long day at work, a super long day shopping, an ever-so-late dinner after picking up the kids, attending at least one ball game on the way home and still having homework to do.  These 9 cans can sit on the pantry shelf and are easily dumped into the crock pot in the dark of the early morning.   Oh, but what about the taste? That is after all, MY priority.

I bought the cans, opened them up (in about 5 minutes) and placed them in my crock pot.  I cooked the soup on low for 8 hours.  Oh my gosh, what a surprise! You are going to have to just trust me that this soup will rival any homemade.  Buy the cans, sit them on the shelf — then make this soon!  You won’t be sorry.

~Blessings, Catherine
P.S.  Don’t forget to scroll to the bottom of this post to see how you can win this week’s cookbook giveaway!

9 Can Vegetable Soup
Prep time
Total time
Incredibly healthy, very tasty, perfectly suited for a make-ahead meal.
Serves: 12 servings
  • 1 can Chili with beans
  • 1 can Chili without beans
  • 1 can vegetable soup
  • 1 can green beans
  • 1 can sliced new potatoes
  • 1 can mixed vegetables
  • 1 can corn
  • 2 cans diced tomatoes
  1. Empty entire contents of each can into the crockpot.
  2. Heat on low all day or on high for 2 hours or less.
Use standard 15 ounce cans of each ingredient.
Keep these 9 cans on your pantry shelf and you will never be caught without dinner on short notice!
Nutrition Information
Calories: 127.8 calories per serving Fat: 0.8 grams of fat per serving

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A Simple Cheese Bites Appetizer

Isaiah 61:10

I delight greatly in the LORD; my soul rejoices in my God.  For he has clothed me with garments of salvation and arrayed me in a robe of his righteousness, as a bridegroom adorns his head like a priest, and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels.

Winter arrived at our house with a blast of 20 degree air last night. The overnight low was 20 and the daytime high 30!  I know there are parts of the country that have been in winter wonderland for a while now, but we have not!  Brrrrrrrr is all I’ve got to say about that!  Not minding the cold one bit is my 35-year-old Christmas Cactus.
This beauty starts blooming the first of December and has been known to bloom through Easter!  She is absolutely loaded with delicate flowers that drop from the stem tips.  I attribute her growth and longevity to all the pruning we have done through the years by giving starter shoots to many friends and family.  Enough bragging, I mean bloggin’ about my cactus 🙂  Let’s talk about food! (Just another of my favorite subjects!)  Soup for dinner tonight – and lucky for me this came straight out of the freezer this morning.  I absolutely love soups that can be eaten fresh once or twice and then frozen for another meal later on.  Post Roast Vegetable Soup is perfect for freezing because the flavors tend to get better and better! And just before
we ate this awesome soup, we ate a little appetizer that was left-over from a little New Year’s Eve dinner party!  Last week I was cruising through some foodie websites and came across a recipe for a “baked” cheese-stick  type appetizer.  I was immediately drawn to the idea of a cheesy fried-looking appetizer that wasn’t fried at all.  I decided right then and there I had to make these as a little appe-teaser before our new year’s eve dinner.  As I briefly looked over the ingredient list I knew I had some Panko bread crumbs and mozzarella cheese sticks in the frig.
(Wow, looking at this picture — I need a new cutting board…) So, Saturday afternoon rolls around and I head to my computer to retrieve the recipe for these lovely little cheese bites.  Surely I bookmarked it … no, well then I must have printed out the recipe …  but where did I put it?  Hmmmm.   I could find all sorts of recipes for frying cheese sticks, but I had my cholesterol laden heart set on baking them!  After looking far too long, and having made up my mind I was going to serve these warm, luscious little bits of cheese …

I decided, “what the heck, I can do this…”   Panko crumbs – check, corn flake crumbs – check, mozzarella cheese sticks – check.  Some of my favorite seasonings – check.  This just may work!
And, I was right – they turned out delicious.  I can imagine these as a perfect after-school snack for some hungry little kidlings, or a nice warm addition to a plate of fruit and crackers.  No matter when you serve them, just know they are quite simple to make, really tasty and BAKED not Fried!

Many Blessings and Happy Cooking!
Baked Cheese Bites
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Baked not fried melted bits of tasty cheese!
Serves: 4
  • 6 Mozzarella String Cheese Stick
  • 1 Egg
  • ¼ cup Panko Bread Crumbs
  • ¼ cup Corn Flake Crumbs
  • 2 tablespoon Parmesan cheese, shredded
  • Salt and Pepper To Taste
  • ½ teaspoon Garlic Salt
  • 1 teaspoon Parlsey, Dried
  • Any Favorite Seasoning
  1. Quarter each cheese stick for a total of 24 pieces of cheese.
  2. Mix all dry ingredients together. In a separate bowl beat the egg slightly. Dip each piece of cheese in the egg and roll in the dry ingredients.
  3. Place on a baking sheet and bake for 5 to 6 minutes at 350 degrees. Baking will melt the cheese slightly, but be careful not to over-bake.
  4. Serve immediately.
Add any of your favorite seasonings such as thyme, rosemary, oregano, etc.


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