Tomato Soup is quick and easy to make, tasty and satisfying, especially now when we have quite a few sweet and ripe every day. But you can also use tomatoes bought in the shops or on your local farmers’ market from a wide range of quality and prices.
Wash and quarter the fruit, removing large stalks. Add an onion and one or two cloves of garlic, crushed, a teaspoon of salt. Put to a gentle simmer on low heat until it is melted, then blizz the whole thing.
Finely dice a small onion, then gently fry in a knob of butter and an equal amount of olive oil until golden. Add the soup, bring back to heat and season to taste with salt and pepper.
Serve with soured cream. Basil pesto, Balsamic vinegar, toasted pumpkin seed or chilli oil also make tasty and visually appealing additions, so does wilted spinach or caramelised feta cheese.
As I said. Quick and easy, tasty and satisfying.
Who doesn’t love tapas whatever they are called, whichever country of origin?
Spanish Tapas, an Indian Thali or simply a selection of starters from your local Chinese, it’s all the same to me in principle: lots of different morsels to explore rather than one large plate of one dish.
Almost anything goes. Fun to make, fun to order, fun to eat and share.
A household and family favourite as far back as my memory reaches, and beyond!
After a number of disappointing experiments with various types of coating or batter, here’s what I settled for.
I use frozen baby squid with bodies between 7 and 10 cm in length, not counting the tentacles. Thaw and clean thoroughly. Although being pre-cleaned, I find the job isn’t always done perfectly so I prefer applying some extra scrutiny before setting the tentacles aside and cutting the bodies into rings. Put on some tissue to take away the excess moisture.
5 of these baby squid make one good sized portion.
Now it is time to start the fryer. I use a small wok or pot with lid and plain vegetable oil, but obviously a real fryer would be better as it is better at reaching and holding the temperature. Shoot for 190 C.
For the coating, mix 4 heaped tablespoons of white wheat flour, four heaped tablespoons of semolina, a tablespon of corn starch. Season with a generous pinch of salt and a sprinkle of pepper.
Toss the squid parts in the coating mix, shake off the excess and set them side-by-side on a board for a few minutes. This allows the coating to stick better.
Then, fry quickly, until the coating takes on a very light golden colour. Be quick about it since the squid cook quicker than the coating; you’re looking at 2..3 minutes at most.
Serve with aioli, salad, fresh bread and white wine and Bob’s your uncle!
Many other recipes include ingredients such as milk or egg. Avoid! At best, you’ll get Calamari a la Romana, more likely you’ll get a disaster.