When flipping through chef crush of mine, Hugh Acheson’s, The Chef and the Slow Cooker one page made me stop in my tracks. The recipe for confit tomatoes. The term confit as it applies to meat means to slowly cook an item in its own fat. For vegetables the term has come to mean very slowly poaching in massive amounts of olive oil with aromatics. Either way the end result is delicious.
In Acheson’s adaptation of confit tomatoes he used some provençal style flavors and recommends using the tomatoes as a spread. I had larger ambitions. I ran with Acheson’s technique of slow cooking the tomatoes in the oil to achieve peak tomatoey goodness, but kicked the flavor jets up to 5000 by adding extra aromatics, and turned the whole thing into a bowl of soup that grilled cheeses would fight over the chance to be dunked in.
This soup creates a French flair on classic Americana at its finest and is a great prep ahead dish.
- 10 whole peeled tomatoes
- 1 1/2 cups olive oil
- 10 whole garlic cloves
- 3 medium shallots, sliced
- 4 fat sprigs fresh rosemary
- 5 sprigs fresh thyme
- 1/2-1 cup chicken/veggie broth
- 1/2 tsp salt and pepper
To peel the tomatoes cut a hole around the top and pull the core out, then cut a small x on the bottom of the tomato. Boil in a pot of water for 1-2 minutes. You will be able to see the peel starting to pull away from the flesh where you cut the x. Shock in a bowl of ice water until cool enough to handle. When able, remove the peel from the flesh.
Dump literally everything except the broth into the slow cooker, cover, and set to low for four hours.
After the four hours are up combine the cooked tomatoes and as much of the shallot, garlic, and herbs as possible along with 1/2 cup of the broth in a blender. Combine until homogenous, adding more broth if necessary. Season to taste.
When ready to serve heat the soup over medium-low heat and simmer for 5-10 minutes.