Cookbook Featured Menu: Hearty Tomato Soup And Grilled Cheese, Bonus Flax Cookies

Since we witnessed a 70-degree temperature drop here yesterday, soup had to be on the menu.  And since I have a counter full of ripe tomatoes, tomato soup sounded good.  This is not your basic canned soup and grilled cheese.  These recipes are tasty, hearty and easy to whip up.  And the flax cookies are addictive. If you’re using an Instant-Style Pot, I have instructions for that at the bottom of the soup recipe. 

On the board:

  1. Hearty Tomato Soup
  2. Totally Awesome Grilled Cheese Sandwiches
  3. Flax Cookies

JeffreyW’s tasty tomato soup and grilled cheese

Hearty Tomato Soup

  • 28 oz canned or fresh tomatoes*
  • 1 tsp crushed garlic
  • 8 oz carrots
  • 2 stalks celery
  • 3 green onions, including greens
  • 1 tsp basil
  • ¼ tsp oregano
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 2 cups milk
  • 2 tbsp whole wheat flour

2-quart saucepan, blender

In a blender, mix tomatoes, garlic, carrots, celery & onions. Blend until smooth. In saucepan, combine tomato mixture with spices, heat over medium heat, stirring constantly. Let bubble (don’t let boil or use high heat, it will scorch) for 5 minutes. Add flour to cold milk, blend until smooth, add to soup. Let bubble again, reduce to low heat and let simmer for 15 minutes. Stir occasionally.

Instant Pot instructions In a blender, mix tomatoes, garlic, carrots, celery & onions. Blend until smooth. In the instant pot, combine tomato mixture with spices. Cover and cook on soup setting for 10 minutes.  In a measuring cup (or use blender) add flour to cold milk, blend until smooth,

Use the quick depressurize method, soup should still be bubbling.  add milk mixture to soup and whisk in until thickened.  If you need to bring it back up to temperature, I use the saute feature, stirring constantly until thickened (about a minute), don’t let scorch. Turn heat off (or to warm setting) and cover until ready to serve.

*you can use fire-roasted tomatoes for added flavor

Totally Awesome Grilled Cheese

For each sandwich:

  • 2 slices whole wheat bread (or favorite firm bread)
  • Enough favorite cheese (Velveeta, cheddar cheese, Monterey Jack, etc.  to cover bread (about 3 slices)
  • Sliced Jalapeños (if you want some heat)
  • 1 large slice of tomato w/dash of salt
  • 1-2 tsp Mayonnaise
  • Butter
  • Spray Oil

Spread mayonnaise on both slices of bread and add ½ of the cheese to one slice of bread, place tomato & jalapenos on the cheese and top with remaining cheese and the other slice of bread, this keeps the bread from getting soggy from the tomato.

Lightly butter outside of both sides of the sandwich and grill in skillet sprayed with cooking spray or lightly oiled on medium heat until cheese is melted and bread is toasted.

While it is grilling, press down hard with a spatula, “squishing” the sandwich. I don’t know why, but this makes them taste better.    🙂

For some variations on grilled cheese sandwiches, click here, including Inside-Out Grilled Cheese.

Flax Cookies

  • 1 cup butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 cup oatmeal
  • 1 tsp soda
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ cup ground flax
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 cup chopped almonds

Bowl & cookie sheet

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

Cream butter and sugar, add egg, vanilla and beat well. Combine dry ingredients together and then fold into egg mixture until well blended. Mix in almonds and drop by the spoonful onto the cookie sheet. Bake for 10-12 minutes until golden, don’t let them brown.


This menu and recipes are featured in my cookbook:

What’s  4 Dinner Solutions Cookbooks: Summer into Fall is now available. Each week I’ll highlight one of the menus and recipes.  You can order the cookbook here.


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