TOMATO PARMIGIANO VELOUTE

for 6-8 portions

 

2 tbs olive oil

1 clove of garlic

1 medium size onion, chopped

salt and pepper

2 sprigs of basil

2 sprigs of thyme

2 sprigs of oregano

a pinch of peperoncino seeds

1 can 1 lb  pomodori pelati 

4 cups of vegetable broth

1 2 inch piece of parmigiano reggiano skin

heavy cream

a pinch of demerrara sugar

 

shaved parmigiano

oilve oil

fresh herbs

 

serve with gorgonzola and mushrooms bruschetta

Do you save the parmigiano skins? Me, on my side, freeze any leftovers I am left with.  When I feel like changing the taste of the stock, I usually add a two inch piece for the parmigiano infuse the broth with its cheesy flavor. This works perfectly in a tomato soup or tomato sauce infusing with additional layers of umami flavor.

I made the soup when I wanted to participate in a culinary photo contest. One of the subjects was umami taste. So I made a few different dishes being the epitome of umami flavor, and among them this soup. I chose a different dish and different photo, eventually. Well I did not make it to the finals. Anyway, I am glad I participated, for it was quite an experience.

 

In a pot, big enough to contain the soup, heat the two tablespoons of olive oil and saute in it the chopped onion and garlic. Pour over the hot vegetable broth, add the parmigiano skin, crushed pelati and herbs.  Season the soup with salt and pepper, and cook the over the medium heat for about 30 minutes. After that time remove the parmigano skin, which by the time, will have infused the soup with the umami taste. Blend the soup with a hand held blender and then strain. Place the soup back in the pot and, add  a pinch of demerrara sugar if the tomatoes are too acidic, and cook for 10minutes until the soup reduces by a third. Add the heavy cream and cook for 15 minutes more for the soup to reduce further and for the taste to concentrate. Check the taste and season accordingly. Serve drizzled with oilve oil and scattered with parmesan shavings.

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