Adapted from Oliver, J. Bread and Tomato Soup. Downloaded from the web on 24 June 2011.
My Comment: While it is still too early for farmer’s market tomatoes here in New England, there are still good sources available for fresh and canned tomatoes to use in this recipe. Besides, I had some bread to use up 🙂 Besides being warming and very fresh tasting, I like this recipe because of its simplicity. Never mind that the proportions are metric (a little brain work is good for you!). Enjoy it now and then create it again when the tomatoes are perfectly ripe right off the vine.
500 g cherry tomatoes
3 cloves of garlic, peeled and finely chopped
a large bunch of fresh basil, leaved picked, stalks finely chopped (separate the stalks from the leaves)
high quality extra virgin olive oil
sea salt and black pepper
2 400-g (14 oz) tin (that’s cans to us) plum tomatoes
500 g or 2 large handfuls of stale good-quality bread (I used some leftover ciabatta)
1. Prick the cherry tomatoes with a fork and toss with one clove of garlic and about a quarter of the chopped up basil. Drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper. Put in a roasting tray and cook in the over at 180 c (350 F) for 20 minutes.
2. Heat a glug (Jamie’s term!) of olive oil in a pot and add the remaining garlic and basic stalks. Stir around and gently fry for a minute until softened. Add the canned tomatoes then fill at least one can with water and add that also (you may want to consider adding more water if the soup seems to thick). Break up the tomatoes with a spoon, bring soup to a boil and simmer 15 minutes.
3. Tear the bread into thumb-sized pieces and add them to the pot. Add the torn basil leaves, let the bread sit on top of the soup mixture at low heat for 10 minutes. By this time the cherry tomatoes will have finished roasting — pour them (basil leaves, tomatoes, juices and all) into the soup pot.
4. Give the soup a good stir — you are looking to achieve a thick, silky porridgy texture. Remove from heat, add an additional 6-7 TBSP of olive oil and divide between 4 bowls — garnish with additional basil leaves if you want.