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Tex-Mex Tomato Soup and Grilled Cheese

While spending the evening with my four year old niece last night, I was reminded of my childhood. We played cops and robbers, sailor and sea monster, explored new far away lands, sang songs at the top of our lungs, danced with abandonment and watched the movie Frozen.

My niece is so much fun to hang out with. She has an enormous imagination and can make a game or song out of anything…literally anything!

It is fun to put aside your adult-ish ways (like paying the bills, cleaning up the house, and being responsible) and get lost in being silly and pretending that you don’t have a care in the world!

A meal that always takes me back to my childhood days is grilled cheese with tomato soup. It is such a staple comfort meal that is so easy to make.

But now that I’m a big girl, I have got bigger taste than just plain old tomato soup with a grilled American cheese sandwich.  Which is why I love the concept of taking an old familiar meal and changing up the flavors. I got this idea from Rachael Ray (she is pretty much my cooking idol!).

Just by adding some chipotle in adobo* to the soup and swapping out the American cheese to a pepper jack on the sandwich, makes this meal take your taste buds on a Tex-Mex adventure!

* (Beware: make sure the chioptle in adobo you are using is gluten free, not all are, I had to search for one! Read your labels!) Chipotle in adobo is a smoked chipotle pepper in adobo sauce.  It adds a smoky heat to the soup, it won’t burn your toung off–unless you add too much!  You can find it in the mexican cuisine isle and it is in a can.

Temporarily put your responsibilities aside so that you can be reminded of your childhood, but in a grown up way by making this Tex-Mex Tomato Soup and Grilled Cheese!

 

 

Tex-Mex Tomato Soup and Grilled Cheese
 
Ingredients
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons dried thyme (or 2 tablespoons fresh, chopped)
  • 4 cloves garlic, grated on a microplane grater
  • 2 onions, chopped
  • 1 chipotle pepper in adobo, seeded and chopped, plus 1 round tablespoon adobo sauce
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • One 32-ounce can tomatoes (diced or whole is fine-they will be chopped up later)
  • 3 cups chicken stock
  • ½ cup light sour cream
  • 8 slices gluten free bread
  • spreadable butter for the grilled cheese
  • 4 slices pepper Jack cheese (or more depending on how cheese you want the sandwiches)
  • ¼ cup scallion, finely chopped, to garnish
Instructions
  1. Add the olive oil to a soup pot and heat over medium high heat.
  2. Add in the onion, garlic, thyme, chioptle pepper and adobo sauce and cook until soft, about 5-7 minutes.
  3. Add in the tomato paste and stir until you can smell it-about 2 minutes.
  4. Add in the canned tomatoes and chicken stock. Remove the pot from the heat and use an immersion blender to finely blend the soup.
  5. *If you do not have an immersion blender, carefully transfer the soup mixture into a blender or food processor in two different batches so you don’t over flow it. Once blended, you can transfer back into the pot and keep on a low simmer while you make the grilled cheese.
  6. Preheat a large skillet or griddle pan over medium heat.
  7. Butter the outsides of two pieces of the bread evenly. Place a slice (or two) of the pepper jack cheese inbetween the bread slices and place the sandwiches on the griddle.
  8. Make a foil tent and place over the griddle pan to help melt the cheese.
  9. Flip sandwiches over once the first side is golden brown and cook for an additional 1-2 minutes (with the foil tent) until the other side is golden brown.
  10. Right before serving the soup, remove from heat and add in the light sour cream to give it some added texture and flavor.
  11. Serve hot soup with grilled cheese!

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