A Dramatic Tale About Goucher College’s Tomato Soup

Tomato soup with a heart in itIs there any higher recommendation for a college’s food program than a student taking the time during a worldwide pandemic to email the dining services provider about their favorite soup?

The HQ team at Bon Appétit Management Company was tickled to receive this entertaining request via [email protected]:

Hello to whoever is tasked with reading these emails, 

I am a former student of Goucher College in Baltimore, one of many campuses catered by Bon Appétit. In my time there, I found that the best part of many days was finding a crock of tomato bisque being served somewhere on campus. I have hated tomato soup every day of my life and resented grilled cheese sandwiches for many years because of it; but this BISQUE. It gave me joy, simply put. 

I have searched the Internet for copycat recipes, but apparently the tomato bisque hype exists only among Goucher students (which I find very hard to believe, but OK). I am writing to ask if there is a published recipe or ingredient list that is available to the public? 

Thank you for getting through this dramatic tale about soup. I so hope to have it again soon. I also hope they send you some if you have never had it, because it maybe is the only thing that can cure this virus. (I did not major in science.) 

Taylor Jaczin 

Goucher Executive Chef Tulsi Giri was happy to share his recipe:

Goucher College’s Tomato Bisque

8-10 servings (maybe less if you’re Taylor)

2 pounds crushed tomatoes (one 28-ounce can and half a 14-ounce one)
2 TB olive oil
1 yellow onion, diced
2 stalks celery, diced
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1/8 tsp ground black pepper
1 tsp sugar
Pinch cayenne (optional)
1 tsp salt or to taste
6 leaves fresh basil
4 cups vegetable stock
1 cup heavy cream
8 TB butter


Add the olive oil to a large pot over medium heat, add garlic and sauté until golden brown, about 1 minute.

Then add the onion, celery, cayenne, and basil and sauté until the onions are sweating, about 5-6 minutes.

Add crushed tomatoes, vegetable stock, sugar, salt, and heavy cream. Once boiling, lower heat to a simmer, and cook for about 30 minutes.

Use a stick blender to blend until perfectly smooth. Cut butter into tablespoons and add partway through blending.

Taste for salt and sugar, adjust if needed. Strain if desired, and serve.