Tomato Basil Soup with Mini Grilled Cheddar-Bacon Croutons
- 10 min
- 40 min
- 2 tbsp (30 ml) olive oil
- 1 onion, finely diced
- 1 celery stalk, finely diced
- 1 carrot, finely diced
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 1 can (28 oz/796 ml) Italian plum tomatoes
- 2 cups (500 ml) vegetable or chicken stock
- ¼ tsp (1 ml) each ground pepper and granulated sugar
- pinch salt
- ¼ cup (60 ml) fresh basil
- ¼ cup (60 ml) salted butter, softened
- 16 slices whole wheat baguette
- 4 oz (125 g) Armstrong Old Cheddar Cheese, sliced
- 8 pieces cooked bacon, halved
- In a saucepan, heat olive oil over medium heat; sauté onion, celery and carrot for 5 minutes, or until softened and golden. Add garlic and sauté for 1 to 2 minutes. Add tomatoes, stock, pepper, sugar and salt, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes. In the last 5 minutes of cooking, add half of the basil to the soup. Remove from heat and purée with an immersion blender or in a blender.
- Butter one side of each baguette slice. Assemble the sandwiches by layering 1 slice of Armstrong Old Cheddar cheese, 1 slice of bacon and an additional slice of cheese on half of the baguette slices, buttered side down. Top with remaining baguette slices, placing them buttered side up.
- Fry sandwiches in a pan over medium heat until golden brown and cheese is melted.
- Garnish soup with remaining basil; serve with mini grilled cheese sandwiches on the side.