Everyday Cooking

A Grilled Cheese + Tomato Soup Party

October 14, 2013

Food52's Managing Editor Brette Warshaw is throwing no-stress weeknight parties for anyone, anytime, and (almost) every kitchen. You're invited.

Today: Grilled cheese and tomato soup, all done up for dinner.

Grilled cheese from Food52

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There are a lot of things to say about grilled cheese and tomato soup.

I could tell you what a great combination it is, how timeless, how classic. I could tell you how simple it is to make. I could tell you that eating it is fun and thrilling and gleefully childlike. I could throw around terms like tried and true and comfort food and just like a kid again. I could tell you all of these things, but I know -- I know! -- that you already know them.

So what I'm going to tell you, instead, is that you can make a party out of grilled cheese and tomato soup: a party that doesn't feel lazily thrown-together, or meager, or cheap. You can fancy it up without adding much work: you can make pesto to slather onto it, you can serve it with white wine. You can cap the whole thing off with peanut butter cookies drenched in milk. You call the shots; you're the host. And I bet that this is exactly what your guests want to eat on a Monday.

The Menu

Make Your Own Avocado Caesar
Spicy Tomato Soup
Grilled Aged Cheddar Cheese Sandwich with Pistachio Sage Pesto
Peanut Butter Cookies

Two nights before your party: Make the dough for the Peanut Butter Cookies.

The night before: Make your tomato soup and pistachio-sage pesto. Bake off your cookies. Eat one. 

Tomato SOup from Food52 

Before guests arrive: Make the caesar dressing, and store it in the fridge.

Caesar salad from FOod52

Dinner time! Give your guests two slices of bread, and lay out the pesto, applesauce, and cheese. Have them build their own grilled cheeses, then head into the kitchen and grill 'em up. While those are sizzling in their pans, reheat your soup. Slice your avocado, toss your salad, and bring it all out to the table.

When it's time for dessert: Bring out the cookies. Provide cups, bowls, and a cold pitcher of good whole milk. Encourage dippage or cookie-cereal-ing: break up your cookies, pour milk over them, and eat it all with a spoon. Yes. Do it.  


Peanut Butter Cookies from Food52


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Brette Warshaw

Written by: Brette Warshaw

I'm a reader, eater, culinary thrill-seeker, and food nerd.


Betsy December 8, 2013
or grilled cheese made with Brie and dried cranberries (or a favorite mango chutney)
Bud B. October 14, 2013
Egads, now I want tomato soup for lunch. Bud
aargersi October 14, 2013
Love this, but I see a typo - I am pretty sure that this line : Bake off your cookies. Eat one. SHOULD READ: Bake off your cookies. Start eating. Leave only enough that each guest can have a couple.
Brette W. October 14, 2013
MY BAD. You're so right -- nobody needs to know that this recipe makes 4 dozen cookies...
Taylor S. October 14, 2013
I just did this last week! Even had cookies for dessert. One thing I found helpful in grilling sandwiches for a crowd is placing the finished sandwiches between two hot cookie sheets and toasting them in the oven. That way you can cook 8+ sandwiches at a time and mingle with guests instead of hovering over a hot pan. Got the idea from here: http://lifehacker.com/5900569/make-perfect-grilled-cheese-sandwiches-with-a-pair-of-baking-sheets
sexyLAMBCHOPx October 14, 2013
great idea, Taylor!
Brette W. October 14, 2013
Oh WOW that is a genius idea!!! Saving dinner party hosts everywhere!
ChefJune October 14, 2013
I'm so glad you posted this today! I have a long-time friend coming Thursday for a long weekend and have been debating what to make for a late supper. Tomato soup and grilled cheese sandwich! What could be better?
Brette W. October 14, 2013
So glad this could provide inspiration. I totally agree.
Kaye October 14, 2013
What a great idea! One of my favorite grilled cheese combos is Swiss or Jarlsberg on a hearty seeded rye. SO good.
Brette W. October 14, 2013
Sounds awesome.