LA Hydro Tomato Soup
Courtesy of Ashley Locklear
Equipment needed: 8-quart stockpot
3lbs tomatoes (about 6 medium-large) chopped
1 cup white cooking wine—divided
2 tbsp olive oil
2 small onions chopped
5 cloves garlic minced
3 tbsp basil
3 tbsp rosemary
3 tbsp tarragon
3 tbsp oregano
2 bay leaves
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup flour
3/4 cup milk (whatever your diet or preference may be)
4 green onions chopped
4 oz fresh grated cheese (parmesan or Romano)
Salt & Pepper to taste
*This recipe has numerous steps and here it is important to take your time to set your ‘mise en place’ (means: put in place). This is what cooking is all about, the setup. The act of cooking is relatively short and it is the preparation that will make or break a dish. Your mise en place should be your joy, your belief system where you are relaxed and focused in the zen of cooking.
First break out the stockpot and place on burner with med-low heat.
Add olive oil to bottom of stockpot; throw in chopped onion with some salt & pepper to taste. Add 1/2 cup white cooking wine. Let mixture sweat about 4 minutes.
Add tomatoes. Here is where you are basically going to let them break down or stew. Barely bring to boil and immediately reduce to a simmer. It will take about 15-25 minutes, the longer it cooks the better the flavors meld together, so feel free to forget about it for up to an hour. During this time, periodically add all the herbs and garlic, being sure to taste as you go. Feel free to experiment by adding more or fore-going others. The mixture will be watery.
While your tomatoes are stewing, break out the deep saucepan—here is where you make a roux-like mixture. However, you don’t need to brown the flour. Add the butter let it melt almost completely and slowly start to combine the flour, stirring frequently. Add salt & pepper here too. Once the roux is appropriately mixed (about 5-10 minutes), slowly ladle the stewed tomatoes to the roux mixture, combine well. Then Ladle mixture into blender adding milk a few tbsp at a time. Blend well return to stockpot to warm before serving. Garnish with chopped green onions. This will taste even better the next day.