Tomatoes Soup

with Open Faced,

Pesto, Grilled Cheese




Food processor

3 ounces basil leaves, after stems removed.  About 2 cups packed

1 tablespoon white balsamic vinegar

1 1/2  teaspoons fresh, minced garlic

1/3 cup pine nuts

1/2 teaspoon salt, to taste

½ teaspoon coarse black pepper

1/2 cup good quality olive oil

1/3 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese


Roasted Tomatoes

10 ounces grape tomatoes

Salt & pepper

1 teaspoon freshly minced garlic

1 tablespoon white balsamic vinegar

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

Parchment paper

Baking sheet with rimmed edges

Tomato Soup

Dutch oven or soup pot with heavy lid

3-4 tablespoons olive oil

3 cups chopped sweet onion 

1 large carrot, grated

1 tablespoon freshly minced garlic

2-28 ounce cans, whole tomatoes with juices/sauce

2-3 fresh bay leaves

3 tablespoons, chopped, fresh Italian parsley leaves (do not use dried)

1 to 2 pinches, hot pepper flakes

2 cups vegetable broth

1/3 cup, low sodium soy sauce

1 tablespoon sugar

2 teaspoons smoked paprika

Salt & white pepper


1 tablespoon chopped, fresh thyme (do not use dried)

1/3 cup fresh shaved Parmesan cheese

4 tablespoons butter

1/2 cup Crema Mexicana or heavy cream 

For a lighter soup, omit the cream

Hand held Immersion blender or tabletop blender. 

Toppings & Garnish

Crispy bacon

Chopped Italian parsley

Roasted tomatoes

Open Faced Grilled Cheese

Ciabatta Loaf, sliced (ask deli to slice)

Provolone cheese slices

Havarti cheese slices or Gouda

Pesto recipe




Add the basil, balsamic vinegar, garlic, pine nuts and salt & pepper to the food processor and pulse until finely chopped.  Drizzle in the olive oil while pulsing.  Remove the lid and mix in the Parmesan cheese, add extra salt if desired.  

Roasted Tomatoes

Halve the tomatoes widthwise and using your thumbs and forefingers, squeeze out the seeds, to discard.  

Place the tomatoes in a bowl and season with salt & pepper.  In a small ramekin, add the garlic, balsamic vinegar, olive oil, and mix. Pour over the tomatoes and toss to coat. Spread out evenly onto the baking sheet lined with parchment paper and roast in the center of the oven at 250F for 2 hours. Remove and let cool.

Tomato Soup

Place the Dutch oven or soup pot on stovetop over medium temp and add the olive oil, chopped onions and carrot.  Cook until the edges of onions are nicely browned and onions start to take on some color.  Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute.  Add the tomatoes with all their juices, the bay leaves, Italian parsley, pepper flakes, vegetable broth, soy sauce, paprika, sugar and then lightly season with salt & pepper. Bring to a simmer, cover and cook over med-low for 45 minutes, stirring occasionally.

After 45 minutes, remove from heat, remove the bay leaves, add the thyme, Parmesan cheese, butter and Crema Mexicana and puree to desired consistency, using a hand held immersion blender.  A countertop blender can be used, but puree in batches for safety.  Season with more salt & pepper if needed.  If soup becomes too thick, add small increments of more vegetable broth to thin out.  Makes 2.5 quarts.

Open Faced Grilled Cheese

Heat a small skillet over medium temp and add a few tablespoons of butter. Spoon pesto onto one side of Ciabatta slices and then top each with sliced Havarti & provolone cheeses.  Place in the butter and cook until the bottoms are nicely browned.  Remove and place under the broiler in the oven until the cheese is melted but not browned. Serve with the tomato soup and toppings.