Serves 4-6

The Sunday Telegraph - Stella - - EAT IN -


900g re­ally well-flavoured toma­toes

2 small to medium gar­lic cloves, grated to a purée

125ml ex­tra-vir­gin olive oil, plus 3 tbsp

3 slices crust­less coarse coun­try bread (about 75g, weighed with­out crusts)

1 tsp sherry vine­gar (you can add more but this is enough for me)

To serve

4 slices of ser­rano ham, torn into strips

3 medium hard-boiled eggs, finely chopped Ex­tra-vir­gin olive oil


1 Bring a pan of wa­ter to the boil then re­duce it to a sim­mer.

2 Make a cross with a small knife on the bot­tom of each to­mato and, in batches, drop them into the wa­ter for about a minute.

3 Re­move with a slot­ted spoon, leave to cool a lit­tle then peel off the skin.

4 Quar­ter the toma­toes, then scrape out the seeds and juice into a ny­lon sieve set over a bowl. Put the to­mato flesh in an­other bowl.

5 Press the seeds with the back of a spoon to get more juice out of them. Put this in a blender with the to­mato flesh and gar­lic.

6 Heat the 3 tbsp ex­tra-vir­gin olive oil in a large fry­ing pan and cook the bread on both sides un­til it’s pale gold (it should not colour too much) and has sucked up the oil. Add this to the blender too. Purée un­til smooth.

7 Pour in the re­main­ing ex­tra-vir­gin olive oil and the vine­gar, along with some salt and pep­per. Whizz again. You should now have a thick, smooth mix­ture. 8 Check the sea­son­ing (you may want to add a bit more sherry vine­gar). Pour the soup into a large bowl, cover and re­frig­er­ate for at least two hours.

9 Serve in bowls gar­nished with strips of ser­rano ham, chopped hard-boiled egg and a good slug of ex­travir­gin olive oil.

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