Tag Archives: Tomato Soup

Corner Shop Cafe ****

212.253.7467
643 Broadway (and Bleecker)
New York, NY

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I was preparing to photograph my lunch today (a couple of delicious chicken quesadillas), when my phone alerted me that I had “insufficient memory space” to store the images. Considering that I upload and delete my photos as I write reviews, this notification means that I am seriously behind on blogging (too much eatting, not enough writing!). I was forced to go through my collection of food photos and decide which images looked the most decadent, deleting the others that were not up to par. This sounds like an easy task, but choosing which images to part with was a painstaking process. Needless to say, my quesadillas were cold by the time I finally finished. In order to make space for future reviews, I will be backtracking a bit and intermittenly posting some articles on New York grub.

The first review is from one of my favorite lunch/brunch spots in NYC–The Corner Shop Cafe. Their menu is an eclectic mix of sandwiches, pastas, salads, and eggs but these often simple dishes are far from the ordinary here.  The Corner Shop Cafe has mastered the art of delivering the classics with a whole new twist, taking them to another level. For example, their PB & Banana Grilled Sandwich which comes on cranberry raisin bread dipped in french toast batter, served with honey and minted berries ($9). Clearly, this is not your mom’s PB & J!

Some how I fought the temptation of ordering this mastermind creation (along with the Creme Brûlée Dipped French Toast ($11)), and instead opted for a lighter lunch of Steamed Mussels in a white wine garlic sauce with parsley, peas, and tomatoes ($12). Let me tell you, these mussels were fan-freaking-tastic! The mussels themselves were plump and fresh, and the sauce was out of this world. The herb parmesan crostini soaking in the bowl was also a very nice touch and made the meal more satisfying.

My friend Sam ordered Brie & Basil Panini with aged tried cheese, oven roasted tomatoes, and prosciutto on a toasted ciabatta roll ($13). Again, a very common menu item, but executed perfectly. The ingredients were all very fresh, from the salty to prosciutto to the flakey bread, and the side salad was dressed perfectly with a nice light vinaigrette.

My other friend Ariana went all out and ordered the Truffled Poached Eggs on Toast Platter with two organic poached eggs atop grilled asparagus, shiitake mushrooms, roasted tomatoes and drizzled with truffle oil served with grilled ciabatta bread ($10). A little bit of food jealous crept up on me when this plate was brought to the table. You know when you second guess your meal decision and get grumpy because another person’s food at the table looks better. Ariana was kind enough to fed me forkfuls every now and then though, so it lowered my post-order dissonance. Everything on the plate was fantastic and for the menial price of $10, it tastes even better!

We also all shared a bowl a Cream of Tomato Soup ($7), which paired great with my herb parmesan crostini. I highly recommend this soup because they only use enough cream to cut the acidity of the tomatoes. You can see by the color of the broth that the cream isn’t too overdone or heavy. It begs for grill cheese dipping!

Also, the prices on the drinks were very reasonable. We had a couple of Mimosas and a round of Chardonnay for about $10 each. I am looking forward to going back to the Corner Shop Cafe as soon as I return to the states!

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{ Tomato Basil Soup }

Tomato Basil Soup

(Adapted from Tyler Florence)
An all-liquid diet equates to hell for a serious foodie. It is even more miserable than I anticipated that it would be, if you can imagine that. For example, I went grocery shopping today and had to actually turn down free samples of food. I never turn down free things, let alone food! It was torture as these older women eagerly waved cubed of aged cheese and sliced salami on toothpicks at me. I had to say “no thank you,” but I was thinking “I want to be fed. I want your samples, I really do, but I just physically cannot eat!” My mom can see my frustration (she caught me reading her cookbooks as literature earlier today) and she decided to make me a nice hearty soup for dinner–tomato basil.
I can’t say that I helped, or even watched my mom make this soup because I was passed out from my pain killers, but it turned out great! She used fresh basil, thyme, and rosemary from our herb garden so the depth of flavor was intense and delicious. She then topped off the soup with some heavy cream and cracked black pepper, which balanced the acidity of the tomatoes perfectly. I ate this as a simple soup tonight, but I think it would also taste delicious over pasta as a faux vodka sauce (once I have teeth again, of course!). I will definitely be adding this to recipe to my own collection, hopefully you will enjoy it too!

{ Ingredients }

  • 2 1/2 pounds fresh tomatoes (mix of heirloom, cherry, wine, and plum)
  • 6 cloves of garlic, peeled
  • 2 small yellow onions, sliced
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1 quart chicken stock
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh basil leaves
  • 5 fresh sprigs of thym
  • Fresh Parsley
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream
{ To Make the Soup
Preheat the over the 450 degrees F.
Wash, core, and cut the tomatoes into halves. Spread the tomatoes, garlic, and onions onto a baking tray. Tie up the rosemary and parsley with twin and add onto the tray. Drizzle with a 1/2 cup of olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast for 20 to 30 minutes, or until caramelized.
Remove the roasted tomatoes, garlic, and onion from the onion and transfer to a large stock pot. Cut off the twin from herbs and add to the stock pot as well. Add 3/4 of the chicken stock, bay leaves, and butter. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 15 to 20 minutws or until liquid has reduced by a third.
Wash and dry basil leaves and add to stock pot. Use an immersion blender to puree the soup until smooth. Return soup to low heat, add cream and adjust consistency with remaining chicken broth, if necessary. Season to taste with salt and pepper, and garnish with drizzle of cream before serving.

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