Chilled Tuscan Bread Soup, Panzanella Salad, Smoked Burrata di Bufala

by Mark Broadbent

May 22nd 2020

This is a raw soup – an Italian version of gazpacho if you will – thickened with bread.  The only time you need to allow for is the mingling of soup ingredients, then blitz.  Bank holiday lunch sorted.

Our incredible supplier L’emporio (the best Italian Fine Food Supplier in the business) is really the star of the show here. Combined with badass San Marzano tomatoes from Nature’s Choice, it’s the quality and excellence of their ingredients that brings these authentic regional Italian flavours to life.

TIP: Go online to L’emporio here and get these ingredients delivered to your home in no time. The better the quality of passata, olive oil, red wine vinegar, capers, anchovies and olives – the better the overall dish flavour will be. There is no cooking process here to enhance these flavours, they are what they are. It’s worth investing in – they are Summer staples.

INGREDIENTS

Tuscan Bread Soup:

  • 4-5 large plum tomatoes (San Marzano’s are the business)
  • A few tablespoons of Giribizzi tomato passata
  • 1/4 onion (red or white)
  • 1 new season garlic clove
  • A leafy celery spear
  • Handful of basil stalks
  • Generous pour of good red wine vinegar
  • 1 anchovy fillet
  • Good splash of caper vinegar
  • Small handful of torn bread shards
  • Knob of butter
  • Good pinch of sugar
  • Pinch of salt
  • Milled black pepper
  • Extra virgin olive oil, to serve

Panzanella Salad:

  • Handful of torn bread shards
  • 1 new season garlic clove
  • Knob of butter
  • 1-2 plum tomatoes (San Marzano)
  • Small handful of basil leaves
  • Small handful of pale celery leaves (small, inside leaves)
  • Half of a celery spear
  • Handful of capers
  • Handful of Nocerella olives or black Riviera olives
  • 2 anchovy fillets
  • Splash of red wine vinegar
  • Glug of olive oil
  • Torn chunks of smoked burrata di Bufala
  • Micro basil, to garnish
  • Pink salt, to season
  • Black milled pepper

 

MISE EN PLACE

  • Preheat the oven to 180 degrees.  Melt the butter and grate in the garlic clove. Tear the bread shards into thin wisps and place on a baking tray. Brush with the garlic butter and bake until golden brown.
  • Peel and chop the onion and chop the celery for the soup.
  • Wash the San Marzano tomatoes.
  • For 2 of the tomatoes: De-skin, de-seed and dice (concasse) the tomatoes: score an X on the bottom of tomatoes and blanch in boiling water for 10 seconds, then plunge into cold water for a few seconds. Peel back the tomatoes skins from the X, chop into quarters and deseed. (Reserve this seeded part and push through a sieve for a strained tomato juice to serve at the end.) Evenly dice the remaining tomato flesh.
  • Trim the basil stalks for the soup and reserve the leaves for the salad, tearing the leaves ready to use.
  • Crush the garlic clove and combine with the sugar, salt and caper vinegar.
  • Finely slice half a celery stick into neat half moons.
  • Roughly chop the anchovy for the soup and finely slice lengthways the fillets for the salad.
  • Roughly chop the capers.
  • Break and stone the olives.
  • Tear the smoked burrata into small chunks.

 

METHOD

Tuscan Bread Soup:

  • Place the chopped celery, onion, anchovy fillets and basil stalks in a bowl.
  • With your hands, squeeze the big tomatoes into the bowl so they break up into chunks.
  • Add a handful of golden garlic bread shards.
  • Add the crushed garlic, sugar, salt & caper vinegar mixture.
  • Add a good glug of the red wine vinegar and black milled pepper.
  • Mix everything together with your hands or a spoon.
  • Let it sit together overnight or as long as you can.
  • Blitz on high and add water and a few tablespoons of Giribizzi passata.
  • When it is the right consistency, add a decent glug of olive oil for glossiness.

Panzanella Salad:

  • In a bowl, combine the concasse tomatoes, capers, olives, sliced anchovy fillets, celery half moons, torn basil leaves.
  • Add half of the torn celery leaves.
  • Add a handful of golden garlic bread shards and half of the chunks of smoked burrata.
  • Pour in a decent splash of extra virgin olive oil and red wine vinegar.
  • Season with sea salt and milled black pepper and mix well.
  • With you hands, take the mixture and place in the middle of your soup bowl – keeping it central and building it up high.
  • Pour the soup into a jug, then pour the soup carefully around the salad.
  • Garnish with the rest of the smoked burrata, torn celery leaves and micro basil.
  • Finish with a glug of extra virgin olive oil, the reserved tomato juice and milled black pepper.

 

TIP: Get yourself some proper Italian job gelato for dessert, the quality is outrageous. Hazelnut gets our vote.

 

BATTERIE DE CUISINE:

  • Cooking pot
  • Wooden spoon
  • Liquidiser
  • Knife
  • Chopping board
  • Ladle
  • Serving vessel
  • Bowls
  • Pepper mill
  • Tea towel

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