Much to my surprise, I did like it! I did like tomato soup, Sam I am!
Since then, I've discovered that Costco makes a delicious version, only it leans on the salty side. I have tried a couple of homemade versions. Buttery ones. Creamy ones. Backyard herb garden basil-y ones. Even some with silly French cafe names. All were meh, but none that tickled me quite like that Panera Bread cupful.
Then THIS happened. And why I am surprised, I don't know. Of course Ina Garten would come up with a blue ribbon worthy version of such a simple, comforting meal.
Yes, I do recognize that the term "grilled cheese croutons" implies a certain amount of Laissez Faire-ness towards any sort of dietary consideration. But people! The winter months are upon us, the days are brief and cloudy, moods lethargic and anxious for something sparklier and more festive than the lingering days of Fall.
For a mere 4 cups of stock and just one simple can of San Marzano tomatoes, this recipe produces quite a lot of soup. And that orzo? OH, THAT ORZO! I questioned it initially, but it truly does change the landscape of something that could otherwise be consumed by straw. So fire up your giant soup spoon, folks, you're going to wish you had a shovel for this one!