We have three large tomato plants growing in the garden, but last week we had only red cherry tomatoes and a whole lot of green Roma and regular tomatoes. I saw this soup recipe and hightailed it to the store to buy tomatoes on the vine, two pounds of them to be exact. It's not really that much unless you get distracted by a friend and misread the scale and buy almost six pounds of tomatoes. Um, what? Six pounds. I paid almost $15 for those bad boys, and now I have a ton waiting to be picked. Fail. So I made this soup, I made salsa, I made baked caprese tomatoes. And now I have to come up with more recipes to use up the tomatoes in the garden. Major problems, I know.
So this Tuscan soup really is a great summer dish. You can serve it hot or cold (I prefer hot), it takes less than an hour, uses fresh herbs, and has amazing fresh flavors. It screams I came out of your garden. Even my I-hate-soup-when-it's-hot-outside husband loved it. The wonderfully unique thing about this soup is the dried, grilled bread that gets mashed into the soup, giving it more texture and flavor. I recommend you try this before tomato season is over!
Pappa al Pomodoro Soup Recipe
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Notes: This recipe calls for dried bread. If you only have fresh bread, bake the bread at 300 degrees for about 10-15 minutes until it's dried. I actually used French bread because that's what I had, but sandwich bread would work great, too.
2 pounds tomatoes, peeled and chopped
1 1/4 cups vegetable stock
1 teaspoon sugar
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
4 spring oregano
4 sprigs basil
4 slices dried bread, crusts removed
2 garlic cloves cut in half
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Grated parmesan cheese to serve
Place your peeled and chopped tomatoes in a saucepan and add the stock, sugar, 2 tablespoons of the olive oil, and the leaves from the oregano and basil. Add salt and pepper and heat slowly to a boil. Reduce the heat, cover, and simmer for 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, toast the bread over a grill or grill pan until it has grill marks, and rub the garlic on the bread. Place it on a plate, drizzle the remaining oil over it and mash it with a fork until it's in small bits.
After the soup has simmer for 30 minutes, add the bread and stir over low heat for about 5 minutes until it has slightly thickened. Add more salt and pepper to taste and top with grated parmesan cheese if desired.
Source: Easy Summer Food Cookbook