I've been looking through my MoVida Rustica book by Frank Comorra and Richard Cornish. Why? Because I'm off to Barcelona later in the year and I wanna get inspired! I booked a foodie tour with a company called Aborigens Barcelona, who sound totally amazing - they have such a genuine vibe about them, they don't go to places who give them commission for taking groups there, and they don't have groups bigger than 8. They take you out of the centre of the city to find places you wouldn't find yourself - this is EXACTLY what I wanted. Another bonus? One of the guys who founded the company collaborated with Frank Comorra and Richard Cornish on the MoVida guide to Barcelona, and on a new MoVida cookbook. Is there any higher rating than that? Who else would I want showing me around the tapas bars, bodegas and hidden foodie gems? SO LUCKY!
One of the great recipes in this book is the tomato and cumin soup... This was such an easy meal to prepare, with few ingredients. It lived up to my expectation of being an easy midweek meal, but exceeded my expectations in flavour. This was a lovely soup, so light and full of flavour, but when you cracked open the poached egg and let the yolk be swirled through the rich, red soup, it became silky and gorgeous. The egg made this dish. Without it, it is a tasty tomato soup flavoured with cumin and sweet red peppers. But with the egg, it's something much more special. It's simple and healthy, and it's deliciousness is enhanced by quality ingredients - you have nothing to hide behind when you create something so simple. I blended mine, which added to the smoothness, but it would equally as good were it left chunky as rustic, like the book intended.
Serves 6, from MoVida Rustica by Frank Comorra and Richard Cornish
50ml olive oil
1 red onion roughly chopped
1 red capsicum seeded and roughly chopped
2 garlic cloves, finely sliced
1 kg ripe tomatoes
1 tsp cumin seeds, roasted and ground
2 tsp caster sugar
2 tsp sweet smoked paprika
2 tsp fine sea salt
1. Score a cross in the base of each tomato, place in a heatproof bowl and cover with boiling water. Leave for 30 seconds then transfer to cold water and peel the skin away from the cross. Cut the tomatoes in half and scoop out the seeds. (Alternatively you can cheat and use canned tomatoes).
2. Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and a pinch of salt and cook for 5 mins or until soft and translucent. Add the capsicum and garlic and reduce the heat to low. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally for 40 mins or until the mixture has a jam like consistency.
3. Stir in the tomatoes and 700ml of water and simmer for 25 mins or until the mixture has a soupy consistency. Add the sugar, 1 1/2 tsps paprika and the sea salt and mix well.
4. Crack the eggs, one at a time into a cup, then gently slide them into the soup around the edges. Cover and simmer gently for 6 mins.
5. Carefully divide the cooked eggs and soup among bowls and sprinkle with the remaining paprika.
This should serve six, but I made it for just 2 of us, and we took leftovers to work.