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      RECIPE TITLE "Fresh Tomato and Sweet Chilli Pepper Soup with Smashed Basil and Olive Oil" Author: The Naked Chef by Jamie Oliver. Copyright © 2000 by Optomen Television and Jamie Oliver.

    yields serves 6 time---difficultyeasy

    I like this soup hot, but it can be served cold in summer. It looks nice, and the flavors work well together but still remain individual in taste. It goes well with a toasted sandwich of mozzarella, or some other creamy cheese, for lunch.


    15 ripe plum tomatoes
    3 medium red bell peppers
    approximately 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
    1 tablespoon chopped fresh seeded red chilli
    salt and freshly ground black pepper
    1 clove of garlic, finely chopped
    2 tablespoons red wine vinegar, or to taste
    2 cups chicken or vegetable stock
    2 good handfuls of fresh basil leaves


    1. Score the tops of the tomatoes, blanch in boiling water for about 20 seconds, or until you can remove the skins and seed. Grill the peppers whole (to achieve a really sweet pepper taste they should be grilled until black), rest in a covered bowl, then peel and finely chop them.
    2. Put the chopped peppers in a warmed, thick-bottomed pan with 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil and the chopped red chilli. Add a pinch of salt and cook slowly for about 5 minutes. Add the chopped garlic and cook for a further 2 minutes. Then add the roughly chopped tomatoes and cook for about 10 minutes with another pinch of salt and the red wine vinegar so that they sort of melt and infuse themselves together. Add the stock and simmer for 15 minutes. Season to taste.
    3. In a mortar and pestle (or a food processor) smash the basil to a pulp with a pinch of salt. Stir the remaining olive oil and a drop more red wine vinegar. Drizzle the mixture generously over your soup.

    HOT! We recommend:

    The Naked Chef The Naked Chef
    Naked? It's not him—it's the food! Jamie Oliver—a.k.a. the Naked Chef—is England's #1 bestselling food sensation, a charismatic, streetwise culinary wonder boy whose personality is as fresh and unpretentious as his cooking. In this extraordinary cookbook, Jamie takes all of the trade secrets he has accumulated since he started cooking at age eight and distills them into a refreshingly simple style that really works for people who are passionate about food, but don't always have a lot of time, money or space. Jamie has applied his strip it bare then make it work principle to all his meals—from salads to roasts, desserts to pastas— and has created a foolproof repertoire of simple, feisty, and delicious recipes that combine bold flavors with fresh ingredients. With more than 120 no-fuss recipes, this book, a sumptuous feast for the eyes as well as the stomach, is modern cooking at its best.

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