It's funny how things work. The hot weather has just about cooked my basil plants and they are looking a bit sad, but the heat is helping my tomato plants thrive. I guess I'll have to go out and get a couple of more basil plants, since we're nowhere near August, when Maryland tomatoes are at their peak.
I'm thinking the tomatoes I used for this recipe came up from Florida. They're good, but Maryland tomatoes are better. :)
This is a very easy recipe to prepare. Serve it up with a baguette and salad, and you'll have a terrific summer meal.
Chilled Tomato and Basil Soup
2 1/2 lbs ripe tomatoes, peeled, seeded and chopped
2 cups low sodium vegetable broth
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 tsp sugar
2 tb olive oil
1 tb red wine vinegar
1/2 tb balsamic vinegar
salt and pepper to taste
whole basil leaves for garnish
Puree the tomatoes in a food processor or blender. Transfer to stock pot and add basil, garlic, sugar, salt and pepper. Bring to a simmer over medium heat. Reduce to low and simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Remove from heat and add vinegars and olive oil. Let cool to room temperature. Cover and refrigerate at least four hours, or up to 2 days.
Serve chilled with basil leaf garnish, if desired. If you have some good quality extra virgin olive oil, you might want to pour a drop or two on each portion just before serving.