(recipe from the book Local Flavors used with permission of the author, Deborah Madison)
Serves 6 as an appetizer.
I’ve been making Sun Gold tomato soups ever since sipping one that was astonishing at Casablanca restaurant in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The little yellow-orange tomatoes are so sweet that you really have to have the vinegar.
(At the restaurant they used a full-bodied Spanish Chardonnay vinegar.)
You needn’t serve more than a taste of this sweet-tart soup. It makes a stimulating,
eye-opening start to a summer meat on a hot day.
2 pints Sun Gold cherry tomatoes
2 shallots, finely diced
sea salt and freshly ground pepper
3 tablespoons Spanish Chardonnay vinegar or champagne vinegar, plus a few
drops sherry vinegar
2 teaspoons finely diced and seeded Serrano chile, optional
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 firm avocado, finely diced
1 tablespoon chopped basil or cilantro
- Pluck the stems off the tomatoes and rinse them. Add them to a heavy
saucepan with a tight-fitting lid with half the shallots, ½ teaspoon salt, and 1 cup
water. Cook over medium-high heat, keeping one ear inclined to the pot. Soon
you’ll hear the tomatoes popping. Take a peek after a few minutes to make sure
there’s sufficient moisture in the pan you don’t want the tomatoes to scorch. If the
skins are slow to pop, add a few tablespoons water. Once they release their
juices, lower the heat and cook, covered, for 25 minutes.
- Run the tomatoes through a food mill. You’ll have about 2 cups. Chill well, then taste for salt.
- Just before serving, combine the remaining shallots in a bowl with the vinegar, chile if using, oil, avocado, and herbs. Season with a pinch or two of salt and some pepper. Spoon the soup into small cups, divide the garnish among them,