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Natural Awakenings

Recipes with Heirloom Tomatoes: Delicious and Nutritious Foods

Chilled Corn Soup with Pesto and Heirloom Tomatoes

Summer servings: 6

6 ears of organic corn with husks on
6 cups water
1 tsp salt (divided use)
Freshly ground pepper to taste
2 tbsp unsalted sustainable butter
1 cup chopped sweet onions
½ cup peeled and diced yellow potatoes (Yukon Gold,
 Yellow Finn or German Butterball)
½ cup chopped celery
1 tsp chopped fresh thyme
½ tsp fresh sweet marjoram
1 cup rBGH-free buttermilk (no manmade bovine growth hormone)
3 small heirloom tomatoes, diced

--Soak ears of corn in cold water for 1 hour.
--Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
--Drain corn; place on baking sheet and roast for 5 minutes; turn corn over and roast 5 more minutes. Remove from oven and let cool.
--Remove husks, cut kernels from cobs and set aside.
--Chop cobs into two-inch pieces and place in a large pot with the water and ½ teaspoon salt.
--Bring to a boil, lower the heat and simmer 1 hour; strain, discard cobs and save broth.
--Melt butter in a large pot over medium heat. Add onions, potatoes, celery, remaining salt and pepper.
--Cook until vegetables are wilted. Add corn, corn broth and fresh herbs.
--Simmer until vegetables are tender.
--Purée and strain by pressing through a medium-coarse strainer and chill.
--Stir in buttermilk and adjust seasonings before serving.
--Garnish soup with a dollop of pesto and diced tomatoes
 Tip: Excellent with a grass-fed steak, seasoned with salt and pepper, or simply with bread and a farmers’ market salad.

Source: Cooking Fresh from the Mid-Atlantic, edited by Fran McManus and Wendy Rickard


Yellow Tomato Gazpacho with Avocado-Tomato Salsa

Summer servings: 4

Cold Soup
6 organic Yellow Taxi tomatoes or other low-acid,  sweet yellow heirloom tomatoes
Ripe cloves of garlic peeled, to taste
1 English or standard organic cucumber peeled, seeded and cut into large pieces
1  yellow pepper, seeded and cut into large pieces
1  red onion, cut into large pieces
½ small, hot red chili, seeded and cut into large pieces or to taste
¼  cup red wine vinegar
3 oz extra virgin olive oil
Kosher salt and white pepper to taste
4  each, red and yellow heirloom cherry tomatoes, cut in half for garnish

2  seasonal avocados, preferably Haas, diced small
1  small hot red chili, seeded and diced small
1  small red onion, diced small
1  red heirloom slicing tomato, peeled, seeded and diced
1  tbsp cilantro, finely chopped
Juice of one lime
¼  cup extra virgin olive oil
Kosher salt and cracked black pepper to taste

To Prepare the Soup:

--Working in batches, purée all ingredients except for the cherry tomatoes in a blender until smooth.
--Strain mixture through a fine mesh strainer into another bowl by pressing the solids with a wooden spoon to extract liquid.
--Season with salt and pepper.
--Refrigerate two hours or overnight.
--Taste and adjust seasoning before serving.

To Prepare the Salsa:
Combine all ingredients in a stainless steel bowl and refrigerate at least 20 minutes.

To Serve:
--Place salsa in the center of chilled soup bowls.
--Ladle soup around the salsa and garnish with red and yellow cherry tomato halves.

Advance Preparation:
The chef recommends making this soup a day ahead; the flavors are better and more complex when given a day of rest in the refrigerator.

This soup can be made with either red or yellow tomatoes, as long as they are ripe. The flavor of the soup depends entirely on the taste of the tomatoes. Ripe organic tomatillos can be substituted for the heirloom tomatoes in the salsa; they will add a citrus flavor element that balances the richness of the avocado.

Source: The Sustainable Kitchen: Passionate Cooking Inspired by Farms, Forests and Oceans by Chef Stu Stein with Mary Hinds and Judith H. Dern.

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