Cold Cherry and Tomato Soup
Makes 6 cups (12 servings)
Visitors to the National Gallery of Art's Garden Cafe in D.C. can sample this soup as part of a buffet of Catalan food, which accompanies an exhibit honoring Catalan artist Joan Miro that runs through Aug. 12. (The buffet is scheduled to be offered through mid-September.)
The original recipe calls for 2 cups of cherry puree, which is readily available online only. We've substituted fresh cherries, lemon juice and a little sugar for the harder-to-find puree. The recipe also called for 3 cups of olive oil, but we thought 1 cup worked beautifully.
To retain the soup's light-red hue, use a pale-colored sherry vinegar. A darker one will taste fine, but it will make the soup look brown.
MAKE AHEAD: The soup needs to chill in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes before serving.
Adapted from a recipe by chef Jose Andres of ThinkFoodGroup.
1 1/2 pounds (about 6) plum tomatoes, cored and cut into quarters
1 small (4 ounces) green bell pepper, stemmed, seeded and coarsely chopped
18 ounces fresh sweet cherries, pitted, plus several halved and pitted cherries for garnish
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 clove garlic
6 tablespoons sherry vinegar, or more to taste
1 cup extra-virgin olive oil, or more to taste (up to 3 cups)
2 teaspoons to 2 tablespoons salt, to taste
Working in batches if necessary, combine the tomatoes, bell pepper, cherries, sugar, lemon juice, garlic and sherry vinegar in a blender and puree into a thick liquid. The mixture will turn a lovely pink color. Taste for acidity, which will vary according to the sweetness of the tomatoes and cherries, and add a little vinegar if needed.
Add the oil and salt to taste and re-blend. Transfer to a storage container, straining it through a fine-mesh strainer if you want a perfectly smooth soup, and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
Serve cold, garnished with the fresh cherry halves.
NUTRITION Per 1/2-cup serving: 210 calories, 1 g protein, 12 g carbohydrates, 18 g fat, 3 g saturated fat, 0 mg cholesterol, 390 mg sodium, 2 g dietary fiber, 8 g sugar