Cancer Fighting Tomato Pesto Soup

By Ellen Grimlie, LRD Jul 21, 2016


Tomatoes are an excellent source…
Much of the research being done on diet and cancer has found that a diet high in fruits, vegetables and whole grains may protect against cancer. There are many ways to add plant-based foods to your diet and this soup is one example of an easy way to use more tomatoes. Tomatoes are an excellent source of vitamins C, A and K, folate, riboflavin, chromium and potassium.

Tomatoes are also high in lycopene, a phytochemical that gives this food its pretty red color. Lycopene, a potent antioxidant, has been linked to a decreased risk for prostate cancer, and some laboratory studies with tomato based compounds have shown promise in stopping the growth of other cancer cells, including breast, lung and endometrial.

In addition, it appears the protective potential is increased when the tomatoes are processed or cooked (for example, tomato juice, sauce or paste) as this releases the lycopene compounds and allows for better absorption. The potential cancer fighting effect of tomatoes is exciting, but it is important to remember that a balanced diet high in fruits, vegetables and whole grains is necessary for overall health.

Ingredients

  • 2 tsp. butter (unsalted if available)
  • ½ small diced onion
  • 2 clove garlic
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 Tbsp. flour
  • 32-40 oz. can of diced tomatoes
  • 12 oz. can tomato juice
  • 12 oz of v-8 juice
  • 1 1/2 tsp. cracked black pepper
  • 1 1/2 tsp. salt 2 cups water
  • ¼ cup pesto

Procedure
Sautee on med-low first 4 ingredients together in stock pot for 7 to 10 minutes. Add flour and cook for 2 – 3 more minutes. Add tomato juice, v-8, water, diced tomatoes and seasonings. Simmer low for 15 – 20 minutes. Add pesto at last minute. Serve topped with croutons. Makes ½ gallon or 10-6 oz. servings. Recipe contributed by Chef John Gilbert, Sanford USD Medical Center

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