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Soup and Sandwich Night – Thick Tomato & Basil Soup with Grilled Cheese & Avocado Sandwiches

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There are many, many scenarios where a soup and sandwich night is the perfect answer to “what’s for dinner?”  Whether it’s a late soccer practice, dance class, business meeting, or just a plain crazy night, this comforting meal will make the whole family full and satisfied.  If possible, prepare the soup in advance so all you have to do is reheat the soup and make the grilled cheese sandwiches.  Dinner will be on the table in no time!

Tomato Basil Soup

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 teaspoon minced thyme
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 28 ounce can fire roasted tomatoes
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • 4 cups water
  • 2 tablespoons sliced basil
  • Large cut croutons
  • 1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • Salt and pepper

Melt butter in a large sauce pan.  Add thyme, onion and garlic.  Sauté until onion is soft, about 5 minutes.  Add tomato paste and continue stirring for 4 minutes.

Add tomatoes, sugar and water.  Bring mixture to a boil, then simmer for 40 minutes.  Either use an immersion/stick blender* directly in the pot or separate soup into batches and process in a blender.  Leave soup slightly chunky and return to pot.

Add basil, season with salt and pepper to taste.  Simmer for another 10 minutes.

Fill bowls with soup and top with croutons and parmesan cheese.

Serves 4.

* An immersion/stick blender is a great kitchen gadget.  It makes pureeing soups much easier since you can leave the soup in the pot and avoid the messy process of transferring the mixture to a blender.  They sell for $30 – $40.

Grilled Cheese and Avocado Sandwiches

  • Butter or olive oil
  • 8 thin slices of sourdough bread
  • 4 slices of cheddar cheese
  • 4 slices of swiss, ementaller or gouda cheese
  • Ripe avocado sliced

Lay four slices of bread on the counter and top with the cheeses and avocado.  Top with other four bread slices.  Either butter or brush the bread with olive oil.  Heat a large non-stick pan over high heat, then turn down to medium.  Place sandwiches in pan, butter side down.  Once in pan, put butter or olive oil on top side of the bread.  Heat the cheese sandwiches, pushing down on bread with a spatula or lid.  Once bread is browned, flip over and cook until cheese is melted.

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  1. Pingback: The Basics … | josecooks4u

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