When you live in Kansas you become accustomed to strange things. Sometimes it's a gigantic tractor in the road that makes your 5 minute drive turn into 30. Occasionally it's a bunch of cows that get loose and decide to wander around the city. This week it's 80 degree temps one day then waking up to snow the next morning. One day we barbecue, the next we have soup. I'm not even upset about the temperature change because I have been craving this tomato soup and cheese bread for several days now. Kansas truly understands that variety is the spice of life. Thank you Kansas for giving me another soup day this year. Let it snow! Just kidding, please stop snowing I put all of my boots away for spring.
Enough about Kansas....let's talk about this soup. It really doesn't get much easier than creamy tomato soup with roasted garlic, slow cooked to perfection all day long. Then, you get an amazingly simple quick no rise cheesy bread to go along with it. Win!
If roasting the garlic seems daunting, do not fear. All you need to do is peel off the papery stuff on the outside, then lay the entire garlic head on it's side then slice just the very top off so you can see the cloves. After that toss it on a sheet pan (or wrap in foil first if you wish) drizzle with olive oil and let it do it's thing in the oven for 20-30 minutes. This means if you're whipping this good stuff up before work, you can get started, then get some coffee in you while you wait. Coffee in the morning, tomato soup in the evening, oh happy day!
After your garlic is roasted, let it set aside to cool for a few minutes before you peel it and dice it up. Then, the part that I think is really fun....dump both cans of whole tomatoes into the slow cooker, reach in with your hands and squish them up! Tomato therapy. Then dice up your onion and toss it in, then the tomato sauce, cream, broth, and seasonings. Your garlic is probably ready so go ahead and peel the cloves from there skin, slice them up a little and toss them into the crock pot as well. Nothing here needs to be perfectly chopped and diced. That's the beauty of this soup, we're going to puree it at the end into smooth tomato-ey, garlicy, creamy, goodness. I mean, this will literally warm you deep down in your sweet soul.
Now, the anticipation is over. Your soup has cooked for 6-8 hours and you can go right in with your immersion blender and puree to perfection. If you don't have an immersion blender you should know that they are a total life changer. I have a couple, but you can find the one I like best here. You can also puree this in 3-4 batches in your blender and just return to the crock pot when all the soup is good and smooth.
I have a secret. You do not need to make a roux to thicken this soup. You can eat it like it is, or you can have "secret" ways to thicken soup like me. Take 2 tbsp of butter, microwave for 10-15 seconds, then into the same bowl with 2 tablespoons of flour. Smash it up good with a fork until you have a nice paste and whisk it on into your soup.
No problems, no lumps, just thick soup. Life is good.
If you have your eyeballs set on the cheese bread, you'll be happy to know that you can find it here. You'll also be happy to know that it's a super quick easy weeknight bread.
Enjoy! Recipe for you below.
**PREP TIME INCLUDES TIME FOR GARLIC TO ROAST**
- 2 - 28 ounce Cans San Marzano Tomatoes whole
- 1- 15 ounce Can tomato sauce
- ¾ Cup Vegetable broth
- 1 Head of garlic roasted
- ½ Yellow onion chopped
- ¾ Cup half & half or heavy cream
- Pinch of Salt
- Dash of Cayenne pepper
- Olive oil for drizzling/roasting the garlic
- 2 Tbsp butter plus 2 Tbsp. flour to thicken soup
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit
- Slice the top off of the garlic enough to expose the cloves.
- Place Garlic onto foil and drizzle olive oil over.
- Wrap garlic in foil and roast for 30 minutes.
- If not using foil, roast for 20 minutes.
- Add both cans of whole tomatoes to slow cooker and squeeze them with your hands to break up slightly.
- Add tomato sauce.
- While garlic is roasting, finely chop onion and add to slow cooker.
- When garlic has cooled enough to handle, peel cloves and dice, then add to slow cooker.
- Add the half and half, then salt and pepper to taste.
- Cook on LOW for 6-8 hours.
- Puree with immersion blender or in small (3-4) batches in regular stand blender.
- Make a paste by combining 2 Tbsp. soft butter with 2 Tbsp. flour.
- Whisk butter and flour mixture into soup and allow to sit for 5-10 minutes, until soup is thickened.