Since my baby girl C was born slightly more than a year ago, I’ve started on a collection of hand-written recipes in a book, to be eventually given to her as her sixteenth birthday present. When the day comes for her to live on her own and cook for herself, she will have the recipes on hand to make the food that I cooked for her, food that she loved, and food that we ate together as a family.

Because I aim to keep the volume concise, I have strict criteria as to which recipes make the cut. They have to be nutritious, speedy, tasty and simple to put together; classic, never-fail recipes that even the most elementary home cook can pull off. This tomato soup recipe was one of the first I wrote. With just a handful of simple pantry staples, a satisfying and economical meal can be ready in 30-minutes (including prep time). This soup also serves as a nice reprieve from all that we’ve indulged in over Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s and will also be a refreshing insert (especially apt with its auspicious colour) amidst the upcoming Chinese New Year feasts.

This portion does nicely as lunch for my family of four, but it can easily be doubled or tripled for freezing, or to feed unexpected guests at the last minute. My little girl loves this soup now, and I hope she still will, when she inherits the recipe book in fifteen years.

About Dawn Chia

Dawn, a lanky food-crazed lady, started out writing for lifestyle magazines, and later spent several years in banking. When not eating, she's cooking, reading about, hankering after, and writing about food. On her first date with her boyfriend (now husband), they dined at four restaurants across Singapore. He's gained 25lbs since, and their culinary escapades continue after welcoming two rotund angels. Dawn's committed to feeding them with the best, and creating lasting food memories and traditions for her family.


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3 January 2013


Hi June, happy new year! Thanks for checking in. Yes, my tummy definitely needs a rest. Very glad to hear you are enjoying the recipes.

That looks and sounds yummy, and best of all, more healthful than adding heaps of cream! Thanks for sharing 🙂

Hi charsiew, thanks for stopping by. Beans are indeed a lot more healthful than cream, and makes it a complete meal with the protein. So I feel less guilty about giving my kids just soup for lunch :/

I made this for dinner tonight and went overboard with the carrot. I had 2 mid sized ones and used them. The soup became an orangey concoction with a strong carrot taste! Know better than to mess with a recipe in future!

Hi Joy, I’m sorry to hear about the carrot mishap. I usually figure out the proportions in recipes by eye-balling. If I’m using a smaller onion, I’ll reduce the amount of carrot and celery, etc. But having said that, I sometimes can’t help but throw in any leftover/sad-looking veggies I have in the fridge, rather than feeding them to the dog :/

The idea of collating hand-written recipes for your daughter is a lovely one, and perfect for a food-centric family! Thanks for sharing this with us!

Thanks Jean. I was inspired by my mother-in-law referencing her mother’s beautifully hand-written recipe books, which she inherited. She treasures them so much.

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