Pappa al Pomodoro (Thick Tomato Soup)

This Italian soup from Frank Bordoni is thickened with chunks of ciabatta bread and is traditionally served lukewarm with olive oil and basil
By Frank Bordoni
Pappa al Pomodoro (Thick Tomato Soup)
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 6
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes plus 30 minutes standing
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Effort: easy


  • 2 kg very ripe tomatoes
  • olive oil, for drizzling and frying
  • 75 g shallots, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
  • 200 ml vegetable stock
  • 2 largeloaves ciabatta bread, crusts discarded and ripped into small chunks
  • basil
  • 150 ml extra virgin olive oil
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper


1. Preheat the oven to gas 150C/gas 2.

2. Place the tomatoes in a baking dish, drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.

3. Roast in the oven for about 20 minutes until the tomatoes are soft and the skin can be removed easily. Peel, roughly chop and set aside.

4. In a large, heavy-based pan heat a little olive oil over a moderate heat and add the shallots and garlic. Gently fry until soft but not brown, then add the bread, tomatoes and stock and continue to cook for about 15 minutes.

5. Remove from the heat and allow to stand for at least 30 minutes or until the bread has absorbed most of the liquid.

6. Add the torn basil leaves, season and stir in the extra virgin olive oil. Traditionally this soup is served lukewarm.

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