Sunday, September 23, 2012

Soup Sunday: Sherried Tomato-Basil Soup with Grilled Cheese Sticks Fried in Herbed Compound Butter

Sherried Tomato-Basil Soup with Grilled Cheese Sticks Fried in Herbed Compound Butter
Soup Sunday is officially back for the fall y'all!! I will still be posting a few brunch recipes here and there, but Sunday has always been our day to sit back and relax and eat some good ole' soup. I have a mild obsession with trying to find the perfect tomato-basil soup recipe. I've actually made a few different recipes on the blog already, but this soup, it's wayyyy better than those. It's creamy and comforting and just plain delicious. I was inspired by the Pioneer Woman's Tomato Soup with Sherry, but I adapted it some to make it my own. I think I'll tinker with it a little more in the future, but it's damn good. I always have to top my tomato-basil soup with crumbled goat cheese, fresh cracked pepper, and fresh basil. But this time, I decided to serve it with a grilled cheese. Hello childhood, I've missed you sooooo. I made a homemade herbed compound butter, and then fried the slices in the butter. Um, amazing. You get all the goodness from the herbs, but the classic taste of a grilled cheese. I opted for Mozzarella, but Cheddar or Gruyere would be swell as well! And to make it extra cute, I cut our sandwiches into sticks that are just perfect for dippin' y'all... I'm tellin' you. If you make one soup this fall, I'd urge you to make this. I honestly lived off of it for a week, no lie. I hope y'all had a great weekend and Happy Fall!! Enjoy :)

For the Soup:
1 Stick of Unsalted Butter, Melted
1 Medium Sweet Onion, Sliced & Cooked until Caramelized
4 Garlic Cloves, Finely Minced
28oz San Marzano Tomato Puree
28oz Cans of Whole, Peeled San Marzano Tomatoes
3T Tomato Paste
1T Homemade Pesto
4C Chicken Stock
3-6T Sugar (depending on how sweet you want it)
Salt & Pepper, To Taste
¼t Dried Oregano & Red Pepper Flakes (or a little less for not as spicy soup)
1C Cooking Sherry
1 ½C Heavy Cream (or Half & Half can be substituted)
Chopped Fresh Basil (to taste, plus extra for garnishing)
Crumbled Goat Cheese

For the Herbed Compound Butter:
2 Sticks of Unsalted Butter, Extremely Soft
2T Olive Oil
2T Fresh Basil, Minced
1T Fresh Rosemary, Minced
1T Fresh Thyme, Minced
1T Fresh Parsley, Minced
2 Roasted Garlic Cloves, Mashed into a Paste
Salt & Pepper, To Taste

For the Grilled Cheese Sticks:
Slices of White Bread
Slices of Mozzarella Cheese
Prepared Herbed Compound Butter, Cut into Tabs

1. For the Soup: Caramelize the sliced onions in the butter and a sprinkle of salt over medium-high heat until golden brown and beautifully caramelized, about 15-20 minutes. Toss in the garlic and sauté for a couple minutes until it is fragrant. Add the whole tomatoes, tomato puree, tomato paste, homemade pesto, chicken stock, sugar, dried oregano, red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper. Stir to combine. Bring the pot to a near boil, and then cover and simmer for 10-15 minutes. Add in the basil and cook on low-medium heat for 10-15 minutes to allow the flavors to meld. Using an immersion blender, blend the soup until smooth and creamy (do this off the heat). Next, add in the sherry and heavy cream and stir. Keep warm until you are ready to eat.
2. For the Herbed Compound Butter: In a mixing bowl, mix together the butter, herbs, roasted garlic paste, and seasonings to taste. The butter should be smooth and the ingredients should be incorporated throughout. Roll the compound butter into a log and tightly wrap with plastic wrap. Refrigerate until firm again.
3. For the Grilled Cheese Sticks: Assemble the sandwiches with white bread slices and mozzarella cheese. Bring a small sauté pan to medium heat and add in a tab of the herbed compound butter. Let it completely melt and heat through. Fry the sandwiches in the butter for a couple minutes on each side or until the bread is golden brown & crispy and the mozzarella has melted. Remove from the heat to a cutting board, cut off the crusts, and then cut into sticks. Serve immediately with a bowl of soup.
4. Garnish with the soup with some basil Chiffonade and crumbled goat cheese, along with the grilled cheese sticks on the side.


  1. This looks delicious! I will save the recipe for future referance!

    Blue Eyed Beauty Blog

    1. It really is, such a comfort food. I hope it works out for you :)