- 2 tbsp butter
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 1 large garlic clove, minced
- 2 small carrots, peeled and chopped
- 2 small celery stalks, chopped
- 1 small red pepper, chopped
- 2 tbsp tomato paste
- 1 tbsp lime juice
- 1/2 tsp granulated sugar
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
- 3 cups low-sodium chicken broth
- 796-mL can diced tomatoes
- 2 tbsp unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 4 slices white bread
- 2 square slices cheddar cheese
- 1.5 c 10 % cream
- MELT 2 tbsp butter in a large saucepan over medium. Add onion and garlic. Cook until onion is soft, 4 to 5 min. Add carrots, celery, pepper, tomato paste, lime juice, sugar, salt and cayenne. Season with fresh pepper. Cook until vegetables begin to soften, stirring occasionally, 4 to 5 min. Add broth and diced tomatoes and juices. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low. Simmer until vegetables are tender, 20 min.
- PURÉE in 2 batches in a blender until smooth. Add cream. Return to saucepan set over low to keep warm.
- SPREAD 2 tbsp butter on both sides of each bread slice. Heat a large frying pan over medium and lay 2 slices in pan. Top each with 1 slice of cheese, then remaining bread. Cook, flipping halfway, until cheese is melted and bread is golden, 4 min. Remove from pan and let cool slightly. Cut into 1/2-in. cubes.
- LADLE soup into bowls and top with grilled cheese croutons.