A lighter version of the classic combination of tomato soup with grilled cheese. Instead of a sandwich, the grilled cheese is in the form of a crisp crouton. A bowlful will warm you up on a chilly day.
For the Tomato Soup, place crushed tomatoes, stock, roasted red peppers, sugar, basil, garlic powder and onion powder in blender container; cover. Blend on high speed until smooth
Pour into large saucepan. Add bay leaf. Bring to boil. Reduce heat to low; simmer 10 to 15 minutes. Add half-and-half and Parmesan cheese; simmer until heated through. Season with pepper. Remove bay leaf before serving
Meanwhile, for the Grilled Cheese Croutons, mix mayonnaise and thyme in small bowl until well blended. Spread 1 side of each bread slice with mayonnaise mixture. Prepare 3 cheese sandwiches with mayonnaise side out on the bread.
Spray large skillet with no stick cooking spray. Heat on medium heat. Place sandwiches in skillet. Cook 3 minutes per side or until lightly browned. Cool slightly then cut each sandwich into 9 croutons. Top each bowl of soup with 3 croutons.
Make Ahead: Soup may be prepared ahead of time. Cool slightly then cover and refrigerate. Reheat on medium-low heat before serving.