Pappa al Pomodoro

This recipe for the classic Florentine bread soup should be reserved for tomatoes at the height of the season.

  • Servings: 4
Pappa al Pomodoro

Photography: MARIA ROBLEDO

Source: Martha Stewart Living, July/August 1996

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup thinly sliced leeks, white parts only
  • 4 pounds ripe tomatoes (6 to 8 large)
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
  • 2 cloves garlic (2 teaspoons), finely chopped
  • 2 1/2 cups cubed peasant bread, crust removed
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 20 leaves fresh basil, torn into pieces

Directions

  1. Wash leeks thoroughly and set aside. Scald tomatoes briefly in boiling water; let cool, then slip off skins with a knife. Cut tomatoes in half crosswise; seed by squeezing over a strainer set in a bowl to collect juice. Cut tomatoes into chunks; set tomatoes and juice aside.

  2. In a small non-reactive stockpot, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil over medium-low heat. Add garlic and leeks; cook, stirring occasionally, until translucent, 5 to 7 minutes. Increase heat to medium high and add tomatoes and juice. Simmer, stirring occasionally, until tomatoes are somewhat broken down and very juicy, 15 to 20 minutes.

  3. Add bread; cook, stirring and breaking up the bread with a wooden spoon until liquid is absorbed, about 5 minutes. Stir in the salt and pepper. Remove from heat and let stand to come to room temperature. Just before serving, stir in the torn basil. Drizzle each serving with extra-virgin olive oil, if desired.

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