Sharp tomato and pesto soup

posted by Kay Dekker <>

(serves 4-6, vegan if not using cheese)

  • 150 grams sundried tomatoes (the dry, not in oil)
  • 2 small tins or tubes good tomato puree
  • 50-100 ml balsamic vinegar
  • 1 small tube or jar green pesto
  • black pepper, brown sugar, salt
  • Grated Parmesan or Romano to garnish.

If the sundried tomatoes are very salty, either soak them for a few hours in warm water or blanch them with boiling water for 40 minutes.

Tip away the soak water, cover tomatoes with water and simmer gently for half an hour. Pour off this water through a fine plastic sieve into a largeish enamel or nonstick pan (metal pans don't do so well as the acid attacks the metal, giving an "off" taste). Rub the flesh of the tomatoes through the sieve with a wooden spoon, and discard the remaining seeds and skins. No, don't use the blender! There's nothing more irritating than tiny tough fragments of dried tomato skin.

(You can multiply quantities for this, and freeze the sundried tomato puree - ice-cube trays work well for this - as it keeps very well frozen)

Combine the sundried tomato puree with the retained water, add the tomato puree and the pesto. Mix thoroughly, and add water until it reaches the consistency of thin cream.

Add the balsamic vinegar a little at a time, tasting until it's sharp. Adjust seasoning with pepper, sugar and salt, and heat through. The soup shouldn't boil.

Remove from heat and serve with crusty bread. Garnish with cheese if wanted.

This page last modified