Tomato Bisque with Cheese

Disclaimer: Any brands and products used in this recipe are not endorsed or sponsored in any way. Do message me if you’re interested in a sponsored post for your product!

This week’s blog post is a fun one. I’ve been wanting to create a series of testing out recipes others have written. Two Christmases ago, I told my parents I wanted a copy of a Better Homes and Gardens, like my mom had growing up. Anyone that likes cookbooks knows that this book has had many editions. My parents tracked down a 1935 copy!!! That’s nearly 90 years old! I absolutely love it, especially the old language used. “Cupful” anyone?

There are a few things that were a little vague in the recipe, but truthfully, that’s really more my style! I should never be trusted to write a cookbook unless it’s in this style.

The recipe calls for a quart of “rich milk.” Best I can tell, that either means whole milk or maybe something between the fat level of whole milk and half and half. I decided to stick with just whole milk.

The second thing is it called for a can of tomato soup. I had condensed soup on hand (is it normally ready to serve? I don’t buy it enough!), so I used that since it’s mixed with so much milk. I’m glad I did! A couple recipes down from this one is a tomato soup recipe to can. I’m guessing that’s the can of tomato soup they were talking about. But I don’t have time for that.

Third part in question was a cupful of grated cheese. What kind of cheese? I guess whatever you want! I decided cheddar would be too strong (I only buy strong/mature cheddar), so I went with an Italian mix.

Without further ado, let’s begin!

Tomato Bisque With Cheese
Serves 4

1 quart of rich milk
2 Tablespoonfuls of butter
2 Tablespoonfuls of flour
1 can of tomato soup
1 teaspoonful of salt
1 cupful of grated cheese

Heat the milk. Blend butter and flour and add the hot milk slowly, stirring until smooth. Stir slowly into this the tomato soup, and add the salt. Just before serving add the grated cheese. Garnish each plate as it is served with 1 teaspoonful of whipped cream.

Source: My Better Homes & Gardens Lifetime Cookbook, Twelfth Printing, 1935

My Turn!

Butter and flour over medium heat. We’re making a roux.
Butter and flour over medium heat. Turned down to medium-low when it started to smell nutty and look like this.
Slowly add milk. If you didn’t warm it up like the recipe said, add it extra slowly (roughly 1/4 cup at a time at first) so it has time to heat between new additions.
Still not all the milk.
Salt! Surprisingly it was enough. I’m used to recipes not calling for enough salt.
It probably would’ve been better to just open the can since it’s condensed soup. I was too hopeful.
The recipe didn’t call for a certain amount, just “a can,” so I used my 10.75oz can.
Switching to a whisk! At this point, it basically tasted like milky tomato soup and I wasn’t impressed.
I also added the cheese at this point, but I didn’t take photos because I was busy setting up for the final shot!
The recipe calls to garnish with whipped cream. It obviously didn’t mean the whipped cream we’re used to with added sugar, so I took heavy cream and shook it up in my Blender Bottle for a minute or so, once it started to hold its bubbles.

And we’re done! I was a little skeptical during the process, but the cheese mixed in and cream on top really made this soup!

Because of how much milk and cheese is in this, it is a rather rich soup. The acidity from the tomatoes does a really good job of balancing it out.

This is a good recipe for making something a little fancier than a tomato soup from a can. If I could grow herbs here in winter, I would have a gorgeous parsley garnish on top along with the cream.

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