Cucumber, tomato and bread soup

Serves 4

This soup is like gazpacho. The ingredients' quality is important – the tomatoes should be sweet and ripe, and the bread textured and dry. It needs to be made on the day of eating or it will lose its fresh, sharp, clean taste.

5 very ripe tomatoes
2 small, firm cucumbers
1 garlic clove
4 slices of day-old ciabatta
2 tbsp red-wine vinegar
2 tsp cool water
1 generous bunch of basil, leaves only
3 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
Sea salt
Freshly ground black pepper

Slice the tomatoes in half, scoop out the seeds and cut into small, rough pieces. Slice the cucumbers in half lengthwise, cut out the seeds and chop finely. Peel and chop the garlic. Place in a large bowl and toss.

Remove the crusts from the bread then tear into one-inch pieces and drizzle over the vinegar, along with two teaspoons of cool water. Allow to soak for five to 10 minutes.

Squeeze out the bread and add to the bowl. Chop the basil leaves roughly and stir through.

Now pour over the oil and add a good pinch of salt and plenty of pepper. Give it one final stir and serve.

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