snow in spring means tomato basil soup

 I was pretty excited last week.  The weather was warming up to the high 30s, even low 40s, and I was finally able to wear a different coat outside (rather than my lame black down jacket).  Well... that didn't last long, because yesterday and today we saw flurries and even snow storms.  Fantastic.  When there's snow, there's soup.  And for tonight: tomato basil soup.  When I lived in Seattle, I fell in love with Metropolitan Market's tomato basil soup.  This is a close variant of that soup.  I have no idea what their recipe is, but this pretty close to the original.  It pairs perfectly with a grilled cheese panini and tonight ours was a chevre panini with carmelized onions and basil.  I hope everyone's spring season, is actually... warming up.

Tomato Basil Soup
by Hollin

  • 2-3 large cans of whole plum tomatoes
  • 1 large bunch of basil leaves, reserve a few for the end
  • 1 large carrot, chopped
  • 1 large onion, sliced
  • 1 zucchini, chopped
  • 1 celery, chopped
  • 2-3 cups of vegetable broth (2 cups for a thicker soup)
  • 1/4-1/2 heavy cream (whatever you prefer)
  • 1-2 Tablespoons cornstarch* (optional, if your soup is too liquidy)
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 Tablespoons olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • pinch of red pepper flakes
  1. Heat olive oil in a large soup pot.
  2. Sautee chopped onions until cooked and translucent.
  3. Add garlic and cook for a minute or two.
  4. Add carrot, zucchini, celery, and basil and cook for a few minutes.
  5. Add tomatoes (with juices) and vegetable broth.
  6. Bring soup to a boil, then reduce and simmer approximately 25-30 minutes.
  7. Once vegetables are thoroughly cooked, remove from heat.
  8. Using an immersion blender (or a regular blender) blend the soup till it's nice and smooth.  (If using a regular blender, you'll probably have to blend the soup in batches until it's completely smooth)
  9. If your soup is too liquidy, mix cornstarch in a small amount of cold water, and add into the soup.  
  10. Add heavy cream into the soup.
  11. Put the soup back on low heat and add salt and pepper to taste, and a pinch of red pepper flakes.
  12. Once the soup looks good, eat it!  You can top with some basil leaves, OR, make chevre grilled cheese sandwiches with fried basil.


  1. How dare you make me salivate.

  2. that panini looks really good.

  3. i know what you mean about the coat-changing ritual! i did that last week too and refuse to go back.

    this looks yummy. i'm freezing :)

  4. Trying this recipe - it's simmering as we speak. I'm wondering a couple of things,
    -The tomato cans are huge and there's a major difference between using 2 or 3. Can you be more specific?
    -Am I supposed to chop the basil, or does it not matter since it will all be blended in the end? What exactly is a large bunch? A handful? An entire plant?
    -1 Celery refers to a rib of celery, yes?


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