Monday, January 11, 2010

Classy vs Trashy (Cream of Tomato Basil soup vs. Cheese Toasties)

A little bit trashy, a little bit classy. That's how I like my meals! Nothing says comfort food to me right now than grilled cheese. And actually for the last few months I have been badly craving a food that they used to serve us in the cafeteria in school called Cheese Toasties.

I searched and searched and searched and FINALLY found the recipe and lord knows I would be going to Food Blogger jail if that's all I posted on here. So I decided to pair this with my homemade cream of tomato basil soup!

So let's get this battle started!

The roughest toughest strangest batch of ingredients ever. I never thought I would have hamburger buns and basil in the same picture ever.

Let's go ahead and start preparing the Cheese Toasties for the oven first!

Block o Velveeta. You'll need 1/4 of a 24 ounce block or you know, 8 oz. I just cut off what I think might be an approximation. You don't really need to be meticulous with Cheese Toasties.

Now you are going to do the single hardest thing known to man.

Grate the Velveeta.

I tell you I've done a lot in my years on this earth. There may only be 3 things I've ever done harder than grate soft cheese.

1. Get through college
2. Find a hairstyle that is right for me
3. Be happy with a bathing suit

I think that's about right.

When you're done your Velveeta is going to look like strange pale cheetos in a bowl.

It's soft and gooshy. For the love of god don't touch it!

Now comes the part where I may lose some of you. Take 3/4 of a cup of real mayonnaise. The more generic the better. Trust me though, you cannot even taste a lick of this when it is cooked. I didn't believe my mother for years when she told me this was in my cheese toastie!

Dump it in.

You heard me! Dump it in and mix it all together!

Whoever said that all school lunches were healthy was lying to you.

Now the cooks at my school growing up had a "spice" called Super Topper. This is essentially dried minced onion.

One tablespoon should do you!

Go ahead and mix that all around in the bowl until everything looks like a goopy mess. Trust me, you'll know what I'm talking about.

Turn your oven to 350, and lightly spray a cookie sheet. Put your hamburger buns face up in rows...

And plop that gloppy mess on... really you'll know about how much is enough. Make sure to cover the entire top of the bun.

When you have all 8 buns done and it looks like you're going to put open faced egg salad sandwiches into the oven you are ready.

Get them into the oven for 15 minutes! It's time to make the soup! And trust me... these are going to look so much better once pulled out of the oven.

In your saucepan (or stockpot) melt 2 tablespoons of butter...

Then add a full tablespoon of flour...

And stir this together nicely to make a roux.

This actually is going to be what thickens your soup up from well juice to soup! Now go ahead and pour in 2 cups of tomato juice...

1/4 cup of water...

And 1/4 cup of heavy whipping cream...

Mixing together until smooth.

Now, you are going to want to continue stirring this until it comes up to a rolling boil. If you just let it come up to that boil without stirring you could scorch the bottom and it really tastes horrible. Once it comes up to that boil let it cook for about 1 and a half to 2 minutes.

Bring that heat down to medium low and add 1 tablespoon of sugar...

1 to 2 teaspoons of cut basil, depending on your tastes. I do two, but I like the taste of basil a lot!

And just a pinch of salt. Trust me you won't need much, most tomato juice is already pretty salty.

Mix it all together and let it simmer for about 2 to 3 minutes, cooking completely.

Oh yes... soooo good. Let that stay on low stirring occasionally until the cheese toasties are done from the oven.

Speaking of...

Oh. Oh yes.

Now sit back, enjoy some cheese toasties and cream of tomato basil soup! By the way, you can garnish that soup with anything.

Some sour cream...

Some childhood memories...

Looking at the fat in this recipe, your shame...

Have at it!

Cheese Toasties

8 Ounces (1 Cup packed) Shredded American Processed Cheese Food (Velveeta or equivalent)
6 Ounces (3/4 Cup) Mayonnaise (Gordon Food Service Heavy Duty preferred)
4 Hamburger buns (Nickles is the bun of choice)

Combine mayonnaise and cheese together and combine to make a paste.

Spread 1 to 1.5 ounces (2 to 3 tablespoons) on each half of a hamburger bun.

Bake in the oven at 350 F for 10 to 15 minutes, or until it becomes golden, brown, and fattening.

Cream of Tomato Basil Soup

2 tablespoons butter or margarine
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
2 cups tomato juice
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
1 tablespoon sugar
1 to 2 teaspoons chopped basil
Pinch of salt

In a saucepan over medium heat, melt butter. Add flour; stir to form a smooth paste.

Gradually add tomato juice, water and cream, stirring constantly; bring to a boil. Cook and stir for 2 minutes or until thickened.

Add sugar, basil and salt. Allow to simmer lightly for 1 to 3 minutes, serve warm.


  1. Agreed. The toasties lost their appeal with the addition of the mayo. The soup sounds delicious though!!! :D

  2. You actually cannot taste the mayo when cooked. It makes for a smoother cheese.

  3. oh my gosh, i am going to make this next week! sounds so good! :)

  4. Mmmm cheese toasties and tomato basil soup. Great post!


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