Tomato and Basil Soup

IMAG1044 This tomato and basil soup recipe originally comes from The Ballymaloe Cookery School Cookbook. I may not have it word for word as I seem to adapt every recipe I cook!

 I think they may use fresh tomatoes for their recipe though and as it is only March, we don’t have any growing in our cold little climate yet. But I will soon be planting my tomato seeds and crossing my fingers and toes for a good summer 🙂 When you say a good summer in Ireland, it does not refer to a good time; we are talking about the weather!!

Today I feel like tasting some sunshine while still keeping warm and cosy 🙂


1 onion finely chopped

1 tbsp olive oil

1 quantity béchemal sauce

300 ml chicken stock

2 400 g tins tomatoes

1 large handful fresh basil leaves


1 tsp sugar

black pepper

Béchemal Sauce:

25 g butter

25 g flour

200 ml milk

1 sprig fresh thyme

salt black pepper

Melt the butter in a saucepan, once melted add the flour and mix over a low heat until the flour has cooked out.  Add the milk a little at a time whisking constantly. You may feel that you need a little extra milk at this stage if the sauce is too thick – that is ok! Add the thyme, salt and black pepper. Allow to sit on a low heat.

This sauce works great with fish too!


Fry the onion until soft in a saucepan. Add the tinned tomatoes and sugar and stir.

At this stage I just add everything into the saucepan and stir, it couldn’t be more simple.  

Leave the pot to simmer for 15 – 20 minutes. If you have a stove, this is ideal, otherwise on a really low hob.

Do not allow to boil as the tomatoes only like a gentle heat… and this is best eaten hot, not boiling to taste the flavour! 

Blend and enjoy with some crusty bread 🙂