2Place the plum tomatoes in a large baking dish. Drizzle with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil. Roast until the tomatoes are soft, 25 to 30 minutes.
3In a large stockpot set over medium heat, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Add the onion and garlic and cook until the onion is soft, about 5 minutes.
4Add the roasted tomatoes and their juices, the canned tomatoes and their juices, and the stock, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer, stir in the cream, and season with salt and pepper. Simmer the soup for 10 minutes.
5Remove the pot from the heat and use a handheld blender to puree the soup until it’s as smooth or as chunky as you prefer (If you don’t have a handheld blender, you can use a potato masher to break up the tomatoes, or you can crush them against the side of the pot with a wooden spoon.)
6Make 6 sandwiches with 1 slice of cheese between slices of the white bread. Cut off the crusts and cut each sandwich into quarters. Crimp the edges of the bread together with a fork to make little packets that enclose the cheese. You should have 24 cheese dumplings.
7In a large skillet set over medium-high heat, melt a tablespoon of the butter. Working in batches and adding more butter as needed, grill the cheese dumplings until they are browned and toasted like little grilled-cheese sandwiches.
8Ladle the soup into 6 bowls and top with the dumplings. Serve immediately.
Laura Werlin has pointed us in the right direction before when it comes to cheese. The noted cheese expert and author of Laura Werlin’s Cheese Essentials now turns her critical gaze to the apotheosis of cheese expression: the grilled cheese sandwich. Only a few factors—the butter, the cheese, the bread—yet so many possibilities for a wrong turn.
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CHOW contributor Stephanie V.W. Lucianovic demonstrates a simple method to separate a tomato from its skin.