I ended my May 29th posting, “Sure signs of summer,” by noting that my wife Jan had bought a few kilos of tomatoes at the Cénac market and was about to make a cold soup for that night’s dinner. In fact, the soup turned out so well — smooth, sumptuous, and refreshing — that I thought I should share the recipe.
The recipe is from one of our trusty favourites, The Gourmet Cookbook, edited by Ruth Reichel and containing more than 1,000 recipes. On page 83, the recipe is called Cold Tomato and Sour Cream Soup, although Jan substituted crème fraîche for the sour cream.
Making it is simple. Start by quartering a kilo and a half (a bit more than three pounds) of fresh tomatoes. Then simply process them into a purée, in batches, using the steel blade of your food processor. The only hard part follows: Using a wooden spoon, you have to push the purée through a mesh sieve to eliminate the seeds and any tough bits. Finally, stir in two teaspoons of finely grated lemon zest; a dash of fresh lemon juice (to taste); a teaspoon each of sugar and salt; a pinch each of dried thyme and dried marjoram; and some freshly ground pepper.
Cover and refrigerate the soup for at least an hour, to chill it and also let the flavours mingle. You can add finely-chopped scallion greens if you wish (we didn’t). Before serving, taste a spoonful or two and adjust the seasonings if you’d like.
The recipe calls for adding a dollop of sour cream to each serving bowl. As I’ve mentioned, Jan used crème fraîche and added a sprig of fresh basil from the plant we have growing outside our front door. And here’s the finished soup, ready for sipping:
Since I’m sure you’re right in fresh tomato season, or at least getting close, this is a soup you should try. Because we eat very light at night, the soup is all we had for dinner. But I think it would be a nice way to introduce a meal of hamburgers done on the grill, with fresh corn on the cob.
Why am I suddenly hungry?