Being a child of the 60’s, I have strong, fond memories of racing home for lunch and enjoying a grilled cheese sandwich with tomato soup while watching The Flintstones….am I alone? While that soup was delicious, it certainly wasn’t nutritious. With my son Will home on the weekend helping us set up the new “Up and Out” pop-up store, I had a craving for tomato soup and grilled paninis (the “new” grilled cheese). Only this time, I wanted to make a healthier version of my childhood memory. Will loves (insert eye roll ) to hear me wax on about my early days, and I wanted to share with him one of my memories. Enter Tomato Soup 2.0.

A few things I always reach for when I wish to make a dish “creamy” without dairy are raw (not roasted) cashews and coconut milk. Soaking cashews for several hours helps to make them both easier to digest and easier to blend. So, if you’re thinking of trying this recipe, you will need to plan in advance. I allowed the cashews to soak for about 4 hours while I was “ahem” working on my newsletter…..

Since this recipe calls for canned tomatoes, I encourage you to be careful with your choice. Since tomatoes are acidic, you want to be sure to use “BPA-free” cans, and also look for organic….but the two usually go hand-in-hand. We used Harvest Sun canned tomatoes for this recipe.

Creamy Vegan Tomato Soup

1 cup diced onion (1 average sized onion)
1 minced garlic clove
1 tablespoon Ghee (I used Uncle Lee’s Ghee, or substitute your favourite oil)
3/4 cup raw cashews soaked for several hours or overnight
1 cup vegetable stock
2 x 28 oz can tomatoes (BPA-free cans, organic)
1 teaspoon dried basil
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablepsoon maple syrup (Diane, you know I always add maple syrup!)
1/2 cup full-fat coconut milk

Saute onion and garlic in oil until softened and translucent. Add remaining ingredients with the exception of the coconut milk. Bring to a boil and then let simmer for 10 minutes or longer. Using an immersion blender, blend ingredients until smooth. Gradually add in coconut milk, serve and enjoy!