A few years ago, the Food Network ran Jamie Oliver’s Jamie At Home series, which included an episode on his home-grown tomatoes. Because the shows are frequently repeated, I ended up seeing the tomato episode at least three times. Every time, I drooled over Jamie’s Tomato Consommé.  I bought the book, and when tomato season rolled around I made the consommé. It takes quite a while (not to mention fridge space) but the results are worth it. I omitted the slice of beet and the colour was fine. I also used a jelly straining bag instead of cheesecloth. So if you are looking for an elegant dish—and a way to use up your tomatoes—give this recipe a try.

Tomatoes draining

Tomato liquid

To avoid additives and preservatives in this recipe, use freshly grated horseradish, as purchased horseradish frequently contains sulfites or sodium benzoate.

Finished Tomato Consomme


4 1/2 lbs tomatoes

½ cup vodka

2 tablespoons grated horseradish


Black pepper

1 tablespoon vinegar

½ cup fresh basil

2 garlic cloves, peeled

1 slice beet, thick slice


Put everything except the beet into a food processor and run until slushy. You will probably want to split the tomatoes into 2 batches to avoid spillage. Place 4 layers of clean muslin cheesecloth in a deep bowl. Pour the tomato mixture into the cloth. Tie up the corners of the fabric. Add the slice of beet to the bowl to color the liquid. Hang the bag from a shelf in the refrigerator with the bowl underneath for 6-8 hours (or longer). Discard the beet. Serve in a pretty clear bowl with an ice cube to keep it very cold, a nice basil leaf, and a few drops of very good extra-virgin olive oil. Serves 8.

From Jamie at Home