For Christmas this year, our son and his family gave us two tickets to Cirque du Soleil. The catch was that we had to travel to Dallas to collect our present, which we did early in February, when the ‘Corteo’ show happened to be there the same weekend as our younger grandson’s 5th birthday party.

The performance was awesome in the true sense the word had before it got co-opted and devalued by teenspeak. If you’ve never seen a Cirque performance, and, like me, love to be amazed by the apparent effortlessness of acrobatic superhuman abilities, you owe it to yourself to see one.

The other half of our present was dinner before the show at The Grape, a venerable Dallas bistro. [Now closed]

From start to finish the food was quite good, but the service was so slow and monochronic that we were forced to make a mad dash across Dallas to make it to our seats at Corteo before they shut the doors, or rather the tent flaps, in our faces! The highlight of the meal, for me at any rate, wasn’t the succulent meat or even the wine, both of which were delicious. It was the tomato soup. I would have gladly traded in my entree for another bowl of soup.

I’ve never met a tomato soup I didn’t like; I’m a total sucker for it on a restaurant menu. But this one had an unusual flair, a little something in there to make your tastebuds sit up and wonder “Hmmm. What is that flavor? ” I didn’t ask, but my palate speculated that it was made with some coconut milk and a touch of fresh ginger and maybe a bit of something even a little hotter. Although fresh ginger’s got a little heat of its own, the hotness said ‘chile’ to me, so maybe a little fresh serrano or a dash of Tabasco. Whatever was in it, it was divine. If I could have done so without making a spectacle of myself, I’d have licked the bowl.

So I came home to experiment and here’s the (very tasty, if I do say so myself) result:

Thai Tomato-Ginger Soup

Serves 4


1 tablespoon olive oil
2 tablespoons minced fresh basil
½ Serrano pepper, minced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 teaspoon grated (peeled) fresh ginger
½ teaspoon coarse salt (preferable unrefined sea salt)
¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 can (14-ounce) premium coconut milk
1 can (15-ounce) tomato sauce
2 cups vegetable stock

1. In a large saucepan, heat olive oil gently over medium heat; sauté garlic, ginger, basil, Serrano pepper, salt and black pepper to wilt herbs and infuse oil with all flavors. Do not brown.
2. Add tomato sauce, coconut milk and whisk to combine thoroughly.
3. Stir in the vegetable stock, bring to a boil, and then simmer gently for 20 to 30 minutes.
4. Serve hot, garnished with a couple of fresh basil leaves.

Protein per serving: 4.3 grams
Effective carb per serving: 11.3 grams



  1. Oh, THANKS for this one! Our favorite restaurant here occasionally has tomato/ginger soup and it’s my favorite thing – I bet this will be very much like it! Can’t wait to give it a go.

    COMMENT from MD EADES: Hope you like it. You can always put a little more ginger zing in it if you want; a teaspoon isn’t much more than just enough to give a hint of it in the background. A teaspoon only has about 0.2 grams of carb, so adding a heftier amount, if you desire, won’t change the calculation significantly.

  2. This looks so tasty. One thing I’ve really missed doing low-carb is tomato soup. It’s a great comfort food.

    What is considered a serving? 8 oz? I’m still in the induction phase so 11.3 grams is on the high side and I’m wondering if it would be worth having 1/2 a serving.

    COMMENT from MD EADES: A serving is 1/4 of the recipe and aside from the bits and snips of this or that, it’s got 14, 15, and 16 ounces of liquid, which adds up to 45 ounces, which divided by 4 comes out to 11.25, which means it’s roughly 1 gram per ounce of soup. Thus, you could have 6 ounces of soup and use up only 6 ounces of your carb alottment. And, yes, it would be worth it to me; you’ll have to judge for yourself.

  3. Because I had done so much yo-yo dieting, I found the only way for me to lose was to stay on Induction. I never went above 20 grams of carbs a day until I reached Lifetime Maintenance. Even now I never consume more than50 grams a day. I started weight training three times a week and cardio two or three times a week. I lost 4 pounds after I joined the gym, going from140 to 136 pounds. But the weight loss doesn’t tell the whole story. I lost3 inches from my waist, which made an enormous difference. And I’ve kept it up.

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