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Old-Fashioned Tomato Soup

 1 Tbsp. butter
1 onion, finely chopped
2 large garlic cloves, chopped
1 can (28-oz.) diced tomatoes
1 Tbsp. sugar
1 tsp. dried thyme
1/8 tsp. ground mace
Pinch of cayenne pepper
1/2 cup fat-free half-and-half cream
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
3 Tbsp. snipped dill, for garnish (optional)

Melt the butter in a small Dutch oven over medium-high heat.  Sauté the onion until translucent, 4 minutes.  Add the garlic and sauté until the onions are golden, 5 to 6 minutes.  Add the tomatoes with their juices, the sugar, thyme, mace and cayenne.  Bring to a boil, cover, and simmer the soup until the tomatoes and onion are soft, about 15 minutes.

Let the soup sit 20 minutes, uncovered.  Transfer it to a blender (or use an immersion  blender) and reduce the mixture to a purée, either pulpy or completely smooth, as desired.  Blend in the half-and-half.  Season the soup to taste with salt and pepper. 

Serve the soup hot, sprinkling one-fourth of the dill over each bowl, if using. 

Makes 4 servings. Per serving: 105 calories, 3 g. total fat (2 g. saturated fat), 18 g. carbohydrate, 3 g. protein, less than 1 g. dietary fiber, 586 mg. sodium.

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