This delicious creamy basil tomato soup couldn’t be simpler. I got the recipe from the cooks at St. Mary’s in Sewanee, Tennessee many, many years ago. I love to serve it with toasty grilled cheese sandwiches for a perfectly soothing meal at the end of a long day. If you’d like to skip to the recipe, just scroll down or use the red “Jump to recipe” button at the top of the page. If you’ve got the time and the mind for a visit today, keep reading.
Sewanee, Tennessee is one of the most beautiful places in all of the South. Were I better traveled I’m sure I’d say it was one of the most beautiful places in the entire world as well. Every time Mama and I drive through this town or walk along the mountain trails its as if our daily stresses are leached directly from our souls.
There is a peace here that I’ve not found anywhere else. I think the town realizes the value of that peace in how they preserve the natural landscape, burrowing structures among the trees and hills rather than mowing them down to make more room. Even though the famous University of the South is located there, folks have still found a way to keep their heads on straight when it comes to tradition and values.
My first visit to Sewanee was over fifteen years ago. Mama and I used to go there once a year for a quilting retreat at St Mary’s. Mama still goes but my hobbies have taken a turn in the past decade and so quilting is left to another season in my life. Mama and I always enjoyed taking time to walk along the trails, often ending up at the entrance to the convent or the Templeton Library (which has a fascinating history to it).
We take time to visit our favorite gift shop in nearby Cowan, The Sampler, to pick up something pretty to bring back with us, and the little white tea room called The Corner House just across the street provides a perfect lunch. As we drive back up the mountain with its twists and turns we have to watch for the little turn off to go to a salt glazed pottery studio. I’m not sure if it’s still around but I think the name is Hallelujah Pottery. Mama has a beautiful vase she got from there and I have a coffee cup or two. From there we head on over to the township of Assembly once more to drive down the roads cut for carriages and visit the small community virtually untouched by time.
Our days in Sewanee are long, relaxing, and reflective. In Sewanee, we haven’t a care in the world. With no thoughts even for dinner. As each meal time draws close all we do is simply wait for a smiling lady to step outside the kitchen door and ring the dinner bell. It’s amazing how spoiled you can become in just a few days. St Mary’s cooks are known for their simple and delicious food. This is where Mama first had this tomato soup and brought the recipe back to me. I’ve tweaked it a bit but I’m sure you’ll enjoy the outcome.
I hope you try it soon and if you get a chance, do pay a visit to Sewanee.
You’ll need: A can of petite diced tomatoes, a little pesto sauce, and a can of tomato soup.
You’ll also need some milk. I’m using whole but you can use whatever is in your fridge.
Pour soup into a sauce pot. Fill up the soup can with milk and add that.
Pour in can of tomatoes, juice and all.
Add a tablespoon of pesto sauce
Stir that up and heat over medium until heated through.
Serve warm. Make it a complete meal by adding a buttery toasted grilled cheese.
Feel free to dunk.
Oh my goodness, you’ll never believe something this simple can be this good.
Wishing you a slow and comforting weekend!
- 1 can Tomato Soup
- 15 ounce can petite diced tomatoes undrained
- 1 Tablespoon pesto sauce
- In sauce pot place tomato soup, tomatoes, and pesto sauce. Fill tomato soup can with milk and pour that in as well. Stir and heat over medium until heated through. Enjoy!
This recipe was originally published in 2010 and updated in 2020.