Tomato soup with cheese toasties

By: Justine Schofield, Photography by: Jeremy Simons

This delicious recipe is from Justine Schofield’s The Weeknight Cookbook, published by Plum and available from good bookstores now


Serves 4


  • 25 g butter, plus extra for buttering bread
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
  • ½ teaspoon chilli flakes (or to taste), plus extra to serve, if desired
  • ½ teaspoon dried oregano, plus extra to serve, if desired
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 3 x 400 g cans whole peeled tomatoes
  • salt flakes and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 litre chicken or vegetable stock
  • 150 ml cream
  • 8 slices white bread
  • 1 tablespoon dijon mustard
  • 125 g sharp cheddar, grated


  1. Melt the butter in a large saucepan over medium heat and add the onion, garlic, chilli flakes, dried oregano and bay leaves.
  2. Cook, stirring regularly, for 4–5 minutes until the onion is softened but not coloured. Add the tomato paste and cook for a further 1 minute, then add the tomatoes and crush with a wooden spoon.
  3. Bring to the boil and season with salt and pepper and the sugar. Pour in the stock and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low, cover and cook for 20–25 minutes.
  4. Remove from the heat and blend with a hand-held blender until smooth. Add the cream and blend to incorporate. Check the seasoning again and adjust if necessary.
  5. Meanwhile, butter one side of each piece of bread. Spread a teaspoon of mustard on four unbuttered sides, sprinkle on the cheese and top with the remaining bread slices, buttered-side up.
  6. Heat a frying pan over medium-low heat, add the sandwiches, in batches, and cook for 3 minutes on each side, turning regularly. Alternatively, toast in a sandwich press. Cut the toasties in half.
  7. Ladle the soup into bowls and serve with the cheese toasties and an extra sprinkle of chilli flakes and oregano, if you like.

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