I love getting deals at the farmer's market on huge boxes of food. I have been picking up big boxes of tomatoes for $10 or less. I spend a couple Saturdays making tomato sauce. Now I am switching over to tomato soup. I was pleasantly surprised to find a couple good sizes boxes of heirloom tomatoes at the farmer's market for just $2 a piece. They were seconds, so they didn't look perfect. They had some blemish, or some splitting. I say save the money and go for the uglier yet still flavorful tomatoes.
Why Heirloom Tomatoes
What is the big deal about heirloom tomatoes? Why is everyone all excited about them? Heirloom varieties are varieties that have stood the test of time. They are tomatoes that are picked for flavor above all else. Unlike what you find in most grocery store displays. Some varieties like Brandywine, Kellogg's Breakfast, and Cherokee Purple are a few ones that I have come across this year.
A Guide - Not Necessarily a Recipe
This recipe is more like a guide than a recipe. Let your tongue be your guide and use whatever you have. I had enough tomatoes to fill a gallon sized pot almost up to the top.
- Heirloom tomatoes a mix of different varieties is best
- 6 cloves garlic chopped
- 2 cups chicken stock homemade would be best
- Olive oil
- Kosher salt & black pepper to taste
- Your favorite fresh herbs optional
- Heavy cream for serving
- Slice your tomatoes into chunks. You don't need to be fancy.
- Salt the tomatoes with kosher salt. This will start the seasoning process as well as help to bring out moisture in the tomatoes.
- Lightly coat the bottom of the pot with olive oil
- Dump the tomatoes into your pot.
- Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer.
- When the tomatoes can all be broken down with a spoon, I like to puree it with a stick/immersion blender. I remove the pot from the heat for a minute, so I don't get hot liquid in my face.
- I then run it through a food mill to make it really nice and smooth (I don't like chunky tomato soup!). You can skip that step.
- Bring the tomatoes back to a boil and stir in your chicken stock.
- Cook until the soup is your desire consistency.
- Add salt and pepper to taste as well as any chopped fresh herbs.
- For serving I like to have some heavy cream at the table to mix in. You could add a little sour cream instead if you like.
Do not add any cream before freezing as you lose the impact of the cream when you freeze it in the soup. Any cream based soup I ever froze suffered when I re-heated it again. It's best to add your dairy at service time.