May 22, 2013
Written by Joy Paoletti and Judy Vig
Tuesday, 21 September 2010 23:00
As a surprise for my birthday last year, my husband and I, as the saying goes, traveled “back to the old country!” After a long and exhausting flight, we finally reached our destination in Italy, to a small town on the Mediterranean, called Pozzallo, in Sicily. The warm ocean breeze welcomed us as we tried to take in all of the scenery with one swoop of an eye.
Very early in the morning and the little town is just coming to life. The second floor shutters begin to fly open as they hear the farmers clanking down the street, in small open carts, carrying the just-picked vegetables, and fresh bread and homemade ricotta that had been prepared for the day’s meals. But the tomatoes - I have never seen a more perfect, juicy red gem. They were just picked, and still warm from the sun.
“The women begin lowering their wicker baskets, which are tied to a long rope, to reach the farmer on the cobblestone street below. He places his goods into the basket, and up they go.
We were guests of a family who lives in Pozzallo, so we sampled the best this region had to offer. From scrumptious homemade pastas tossed with fresh tomatoes, and every combination of a cooked red sauce, to the fresh tomato salad, paired with freshly made mozzarella and chunks of perfectly cured prosciutto.
I have chosen this recipe below because it is so easy to prepare, and there are so many end-of-the-season tomatoes everywhere you look. Buon Apetito!!
2 1/2 - 3 lbs. Plum tomatoes, quartered
3-4 turns of olive oil
2-3 garlic cloves
1 large onion, quartered
2 cups chicken stock
3 tablespoons butter
4 slices day-old Tuscan bread slices
parmesan cheese, garnish
chopped parsley, garnish
chopped basil, garnish
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place tomatoes, onion and garlic on cookie sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast for about 45 minutes or until tomatoes are slightly charred and soft. Put into a food processor, blend to desired consistency.
Return mixture to soup pot and add the chicken broth and butter. If the two cups is not enough, just add more. You can’t ruin it. Bring to a simmer for a few minutes and taste soup. Re-season if necessary.
Gently crack each egg on the top of the soup and cover pot to cook eggs until desired doneness. In the meantime, prepare the bread by drizzling with olive oil and toasting in oven until lightly toasted. Place at the bottom of soup bowl and ladle soup into bowl. Place the egg on top of soup. Garnish with lots of parmesan cheese, parsley and basil. Enjoy!
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