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We figured it’s about time we introduced another soup where the tomato is the hero. This humble fruit (or vegetable– if we want to use the culinary classification instead of the botanical one) packs some massive flavor that makes it perfect for a hearty, winter soup.

We were rethinking new, or interesting ways to enhance the flavor of the standard tomato basil soup. We wanted to find a way to lighten the flavor a little, and citrus immediately came to mind. The addition of some orange zest and and a little bit of cumin really helped elevate the flavor of this soup. We also took a look at the common practice of adding yogurt or sour cream to tomato soup and wanted to some way enhance the practice. The solution was inspired by a different dish: kebabs. We took a moment to consider the yogurt sauce commonly served with kebabs and decided to thicken it by leaving out the lemon sauce and doubling the yogurt. Serve the soup in a large bowl, or even in coffee mug for a great appetizer that can be carried around before the main course is served. Keep reading below for this great recipe…

Tomato Soup with Basil YogurtSauce

(makes 6 servings)



  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 medium onions, thinly sliced
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • Zest from 1 large orange, peeled off in wide strips
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1/3 cup basil tightly packed (or 2 tablespoons dried basil)
  • 1/3 cup marjoram leaves tightly packed (or 2 tablespoons dried marjoram)
  • One 28oz can and one 14oz can whole tomatoes
  • 8 cups vegetable broth


  • 2 cups plain yogurt
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 4 scallions, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup tightly packed fresh basil leaves, thinly sliced


  1. In a large, heavy pot heat oil over medium-low heat.
  2. Add the onion, salt, pepper, orange zest, and garlic.
  3. Cover the pot and cook, stirring occasionally for 20 minutes or until the onions are soft.
  4. Stir in the cumin, basil, marjoram, and red pepper flakes. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally over medium-low heat.
  5. Add the tomatoes and their liquid, bay leaves, and broth. Bring to a gentle simmer, cover, and cook for 20 minutes.
  6. Let the soup cool slightly, then pull out the orange peel and bay leaves and puree the soup in a blender or food processor.
  7. To make the yogurt sauce, simply fold together the ingredients together in a bowl.
  8. Serve the soup hot and add a spoonful of the yogurt sauce on top.
  9. Enjoy!

Soup recipe adapted from Fine Cooking

Yogurt Sauce recipe adapted from New York Times