One of them

I don’t really like food blogs. They are kind of one-dimensional, know what I mean? The writers seem to all be grasping for nirvana, via the tastebuds.

Then again, those food writers might be the smarter members of the human race. We humans have gotta eat so we might as well pour our heart and soul into the never-ending task.

What’s that you say? This is a food blog? Oh. Well, right.

Right! Then that means I am one of the more intelligent people on our planet since I think it jolly good fun to whisk flour into melted butter, add tomato juice and milk, and then talk about it.

(Question: Can you call cooking an “art” if it’s something that you have to do anyway?)

Cream of Tomato Soup
Adapted from More-With-Less Cookbook by Doris Janzen Longacre

I didn’t can any tomato juice last year (and have regretted it many times over), so when I found a jar of juice hidden in the back corner of the hutch, I was delighted. I blanched at the date—‘04, so it was probably canned the summer after Sweetsie was born when the cousins from Oregon were visiting—but the seal was good, so I went ahead and made a pot of soup for dinner. There were no leftovers.

This is one of the kids favorite soups. It is smoothly creamy, making it the ideal soup to drink with a straw (when I’m feeling benevolent).

If you want to gussy it up a bit, you can saute some minced onion and garlic in the melted butter before adding the flour. And you can add other seasonings, too—basil, oregano, thyme, marjoram, etc.

4 tablespoons butter
5 tablespoons flour
2 teaspoons sugar
1-2 teaspoons salt
4 cups tomato juice
4 cups milk

Melt the butter in a medium-sized saucepan. After the butter has melted, add the flour, sugar, and salt, and stir to combine. Pour in the tomato juice—add the first cup of juice slowly, stirring steadily to mix it well with the roux. Bring the tomato juice to a boil, stirring constantly. Let it boil briefly, and then whisk in the milk. Heat through, taste to check seasonings, and serve.


  • Ivriniel

    My Mom used to make this all the time when I was a kid, only she would substitute canned tomatoes for the tomato juice.

  • Anonymous

    Thanks for sharing! I grew up with the More with Less Cookbook in rural Virginia (perhaps pretty close to you, since I see you publish in the DNR 🙂 and have since moved out to the west coast. It made my day to find this recipe on a day when I'm having a craving for home!

  • Jennifer Jo

    Oh goodness! Thanks for catching that. It doesn’t really matter (thus the reason I wrote it twice—I must not’ve been able to make up my mind), so let’s just say to add it with the flour. I’ll go edit the recipe now…

  • Anonymous

    QUESTION: Your original instructions seem to add the sugar and salt twice (1st time along with the flour to the butter, then 2nd time after adding the juice to the roux before boiling). At the moment, I’m confused about when to add the sugar and salt, unless you meant for us to divide them and add half at the two different times.

  • Anonymous

    Yum. I love cream of tomato soup. Especially with a little splash of hot sauce to give that warm glow in the back of my throat.

    What is it with tomato soup and toasted cheese sandwiches, anyway? Every time I serve toasted cheese sandwiches without tomato soup, the meal feels incomplete somehow. Is it just tradition, based on years of childhood meal association, or something more elemental, a pairing of essential foodstuffs?


Leave a Comment