Sunday, September 21, 2008

My Favorite Tomato Soup

For as long as I can remember I have always loved grilled cheese and tomato soup. When I moved to LA, I discovered Doughboy's (long before Oprah named it as the place with the best Red Velvet Cake in the US) and my favorite menu item there was their "After School Special" - delicious creamy tomato soup and a grilled cheese sandwich with Gruyere, Swiss and cheddar on their own bakery fresh bread. Well grilled cheese I have mastered and will make for you all in the future. But tomato soup not so much. Because of all of my traveling over the last year and the fact that my local Doughboy's closed and relocated over to Hollywood, I hadn't been in awhile. A few month ago I got a craving only to find that they had closed their doors completely! Imagine how disappointed I was to hear that I would never have their delicious tomato soup again. I went to the Doughboy's website to see if they had a new location opening anytime soon and instead found that they were closed due to all kinds of bureaucratic red tape. If you are interested check out their site here. Anyway, the owner, Frank, had his email on the site and I decided to get in touch to see if by any small chance he'd be willing to share his delicious soup recipe. He was willing and despite being extremely busy eventually sent the recipe along. His recipe was somewhat imprecise, which is actually my favorite way to cook, but I tried to get more exact measurements as I made my soup. Here you go!

Doughboy's Tomato Soup
recipe provided by Frank, Doughboy's Owner

1 onion, chopped
2 cloves of garlic, chopped
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
2 28 oz cans of crushed Italian tomatoes (I prefer San Marzano tomatoes)
12 oz half and half (just under a pint)
salt & pepper to taste
3-4 pinches of sugar

1. Heat oil in a heavy sauce pan or soup pot over low heat. Add the onions and cook over low until tender, approx 15 minutes. Add garlic and cook for 10 more minutes on low.
2. Add balsamic vinegar and reduce until syrupy, approximately 10-15 more minutes.
3. Add tomatoes and keep over low heat until simmering. As soon as the soup simmers and is heated all the way through, remove from the heat. The tomatoes need no more cook that the slight simmer to let the flavors blend.
4. Add the half and half and stir until combined. Add salt & pepper to your liking and then add sugar a pinch at time, not to sweeten the soup but to cut the acidity of the tomatoes.

Even making it at home, I still think it's the best Tomato Soup I've ever had. I didn't enjoy it with grilled cheese today, but I have enough leftover that I'm sure I will tomorrow!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Tomato soup and grilled cheese is a classic combination -- one that I love. This soup sounds lovely. Simple but with the right ingredients. Thanks for sharing.