Tomato – Basil Soup
As served at La Madeleine's Bistro/Restaurant. Excerpted from the Fort Worth Star-Telegram May 20. 1994.
• 2 14½ ounce cans whole tomatoes, crushed
• 3 cups tomato juice
• 1 cup chicken stock
• 12 washed fresh basil leaves
• 1 cup heavy cream
• 4 Tablespoons butter (½ stick)
• - Salt to taste
• ¼ teaspoon cracked black pepper
1. In a black cast iron pot, combine tomatoes, juice and stock.
2. Simmer 30 minutes.
3. Puree, along with the basil leaves, in a food processor or with a hand-held food blender, right in the cooking pan.
4. Return to saucepan and add salt, pepper, cream and butter, while stirring, over low heat.
5. Garnish with basil leaves.
Pink Tomato Soup
This winter soup works best with preserved tomatoes. It was made using bottled, preserved tomatoes that were coarsely chopped and cooked down in the process. Canned tomatoes - diced, whole, or pureed - work as well.
The given ratios are approximate and a decent starting point. Adjust them to your liking.
1 cup tomato as above.
4 medium sized potatoes.
1/2 cup or to taste of sour cream
1-1/2 tbsp butter
1-1/2 tbsp flour
1 tbsp sugar
Peel and dice the potatoes, and add enough water to cover them in a smallish pot. If using water with about 2 tsps of salt. Start the potatoes cooking,
Prepare your tomato component and add to pot.
Bruise the peppercorns and add them along with the sugar.
Just before the potatoes are done, prepare a roux of the butter and flour by frying the flour in the butter for about 2-3 minutes.
Removie from heat, and whisk in 1/2 cup of the soup broth or more so that there are no lumps. Add to soup and continue till potatoes are done.
Incorporate about 1/2cup of broth into the sour cream, add to soup and bring back to boil for about 2-3 minutes. Adjust the salt during this time..
I can't remember all the details of the tomato soup that I make. It's just what's there.
Saute an onion, and some celery. Add a 28 oz can of diced tomatoes, or stewed tomatoes that a knife or kitchen sheers passed through. Heat to boil, add some chopped celery leaves, pepper (probably not salt, as the canned tomatoes usually have enough) and herbs....whatever's in the garden: basil, oregano, thyme, chives, parsley....any combination of what looks good, today. Just before adding a couple of cups of skim (no-fat milk) add about a 1/4 teaspoon of baking soda. (The soda neutralizes the acid that would curdle the milk) Stir, heating to serving temp.
It's low fat, and light, but filling. And always different. I've made it with evaporated skim milk, and it's a little creamier. I've made it with chicken stock, and it has a creamy quality. Adding some potato flakes, or a cooked, mashed potato also makes it creamy, as does a handful of dry breadcrumbs. Another variation was using a leek instead of the onions, and adding garlic before adding the tomatoes, for a minute. I don't whiz it at all, or maybe just enough to break up some of the tomatoes, but leave it a little chunky. Sometimes the milk curdles a little anyway, but with a good brisk stir, it's no different than a buttermilk-tomato soup. I often serve it with some bacon bits, or nice crunchy homemade croutons.