In the Kitchen with 11 Magnolia Lane, Tomato Basil Bisque Soup & Avocado Chef’s Salad

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tomato basil bisque



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  So…. how are you all liking the Spring Menu so far?

I have really been enjoying the meals on the new spring menu and all the staples the spring harvest offers.  I continue to be amazed by the power of real food and how much I enjoy cooking it.

Here is a recipe from my Spring Menu that you are sure to love.  The salad is light & healthy and the soup is creamy & comforting.  The perfect combo for those chilly spring showers.

Avocado Chef's Salad with Ranch Dressing

Avocado Chef’s Salad with Ranch Dressing


Avocado Chef’s Salad


  • 1 large bunch Arugula
  • 1 large bag of pre-washed spinach
  • 1 ripe avocado, sliced
  • 2 Roma tomato, sliced
  • 1 English cucumber, sliced matchstick style
  • 1 yellow pepper, diced
  • 1/4 lb deli ham, diced
  • 1/2  sweet onion, sliced thin


  1. Wash all veggies, spinach and arugula
  2. Toss the spinach and arugula to combine leaves. Place in a large serving bowl.
  3. Place tomatoes in each corner
  4. Place cucumber in opposite corners
  5. Sprinkle the peppers and onions over the top of the salad
  6. Neatly lay the avocado slices in the center of the salad and sprinkle with the diced ham
  7. Serve with your favorite ranch dressing (this is mine if I don’t have time to make it from scratch).


tomato basil bisque

Tomato Basil Bisque

Tomato Basil Bisque


  • 5 Ripe Roma tomatoes, halved
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, sliced
  • 1 tablespoon chopped garlic
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth (or vegetable broth)
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream (omit and double broth if you are Paleo)
  • One 12 ounce can of diced tomatoes
  • 1 cup tomato juice (I used Mrs. T’s bold and spicy bloody mary mix)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons of sugar
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Fresh Basil, chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • Red chili flakes
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Parmesan Cheese, grated for garnish (optional)


    1. Preheat grill and brush grate with a bit of canola oil
    2. Brush tomato halves with olive oil.  Grill them until nicely charred and soft on both sides, 2-3 minutes.
    3. In a deep saucepan, heat 2 tablespoons of oil over medium heat.  Cook onion until soft, approximately 3-4 minutes.  Add in garlic and cook for another 3-4 minutes.
    4. Add tomato paste, stir well and cook for 2-3 minutes.  Mix in broth, and scrape off all the goodies stuck to the bottom of the pan.  Bring the liquid to a low boil.
    5.  Add in the grilled tomatoes, canned tomatoes and tomato juice and bring it up to a simmer.  Add sugar, bay leaf, Italian seasoning, chili flakes (optional) and salt & pepper.  Simmer for 20-25 minutes until soup is combined and flavorful.
    6. Remove from heat and remove bay leaf.
    7. With an immersion blender (a regular blender or food processor will also work), puree soup until smooth.
    8. Return soup to the pot and medium.  Mix in cream, bring soup to a simmer and cook for another 5-10 minutes.  You want the soup to be a beautiful shade of deep orange.
    9. Remove from heat, garnish with basil and Parmesan cheese.
    10. Enjoy

Thanks for stopping by~

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  1. Yum…I’ll be making this soon!

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