Tomato Garam Masala Soup

chocolate bark

Every year for over 20 years we’ve decorated cookies for the holidays. Even though the kids are in their 20s and don’t live at home anymore we continue the tradition. Getting everyone together is complicated This makes for a hectic, but fun, holiday. Because it’s such an event now, friends accompany our children home, we have to have a feast as well. I’m trying a Tomato Garam Masala Soup this year.

I made the sugar cutout cookies, gingerbread boys and girls, and cake pops for decorating. In addition to the soup, we’re having  macaroni and cheese, a fabulous and extraordinarily rich recipe from James Beard‘s Pasta Cookbook, and salad. I also made French meringue kisses, and chocolate bark.

Lots of planning, cooking and a little disappointment. Claire opted to go the football game with her father (he doesn’t participate in the cookie decorating). Margot came, but her friends begged out at the last minute. I had a couple of friends who came. It was fun, but I realized that while the tradition is important to the girls and to me, it’s time to retire, at least for now. I’ll wait for the grandchildren to arrive someday and revive the practice.😍😍😍

The tomato soup was a last minute inspiration and I didn’t write any notes before cooking. When tasting the soup, I realized something was missing. The soup was a bit acidic. I refrigerated it and thought about it overnight. Then it dawned on me, I forgot to use garlic. To remedy that, I roasted a whole garlic and pureed it in a cup of the soup and then combined it. What a difference. That was the missing element.


Tomato Garam Masala Soup

A quick and easy flavorful soup for lunch or dinner.

  • Author: Trish Lobenfeld


1 large onion, sliced
3 medium carrots, sliced
3 medium celery stalks, sliced
2 teaspoons Kosher salt
1 head garlic, roasted, pulp only
1 tablespoon garam masala
2 (28-ounce) cans crushed tomatoes


Heat the oil in a large Dutch oven or covered saucepan over medium heat.

Stir in the onions, carrots, celery and salt;  cover and sweat, releasing the natural water content of the aromatics, for 4 minutes.

Add the garlic and garam masala; stir constantly for about 30 seconds or until aromas are very fragrant.

Add the tomatoes and 28 ounces of cold water (use one of the empty cans). Bring to a boil, reduce heat to simmer and continue cooking for 45 minutes. The soup is done when you push the softened vegetables against the side of the pan and they turn to mush.

Puree soup in batches in a food processor, blender, or with an immersion blender. Serve immediately or refrigerate.


See our video on how to safely blend hot ingredients.

Soup freezes well.

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