No matter where you live, nothing warms a soul, or a spring cold, like tomato soup and grilled cheese cut into ‘soldiers,’ or sticks, for easy dunking.


Credit: Photography by Tara Donne

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Grilled Cheese


Instructions Checklist
  • In a pot, add the oil, two turns of the pan, and the butter. Heat over medium to medium-high. When the butter melts, add the fennel, onion, celery, and garlic; season with salt and pepper. Add the sugar and bay leaf. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables soften, about 5 minutes. Add the stock. Raise heat to high. Cook, stirring often, until the liquid is reduced by half, about 10 minutes. Add the tomatoes. Simmer until the flavors meld, about 15 minutes. Remove the bay leaf. Using an immersion blender, or working in batches in a regular blender, puree the soup; season.

  • For the sandwiches, heat a nonstick skillet or griddle over medium. In a small bowl, mix the butter, Parm, parsley, and garlic; lightly spread on 1 side of each bread slice. Build 4 sandwiches with the bread (spread-side facing out) and the sliced cheeses. Grill until the bread is deep golden and the cheese is melty, about 3 minutes per side. Cut each sandwich into 3 sticks (a.k.a. soldiers).

  • Serve the soup in crocks or bowls with the grilled-cheese soldiers for dipping.