FIVE MINUTES. That's all it took for my wonderful wholemeal buns to go from crisp and golden to extra crisp and charcoal. You don't know frustration utnil you've spent more than 2 hours carefully making some buns -- and they turned out pretty good -- only to answer a phone call, leaving them FIVE MINUTES longer in the oven (it was switched off, mind you), only to come back and see them in with black tops.
GREAT. Now what do I do with 9 blackened buns? I didn't include pictures of the disaster buns because ... well they were just too ugly. First I scrapped off the tops. They looked less ominous but still unpresentable. Buns must have smooth rounded tops not scraggly, uneven flat tops. So I thought, as small as they were, I'd scoop out the middles and fill them with soup. Kinda a bread bowlette (I am making up words as I go along).
Tomato soup was what I deemed suitable. It's easy to make and delicious with bread and some cheese. Plus I had lotsa tomatoes which were ripening fast.
Let me not kid you. The buns were way to small to be bowls and could only hold three spoons of soup. However, topped with some mozerella and grilled in the oven for 7 mins, they came out really well. The soup thickened and the cheese melted and the bread softened. You needn't scoop the meagre soup out; you could bite into the bun which had become a tomato -cheese filled wholemeal bun. He he he.
Because I wanted to melt the cheese over the soup, I opted not to make a creamy tomato soup. By the way, if you want a creamy soup, try Jamie Oliver's ... it's fantastic. My clear soup was pretty easy to put together.
Wholesome Tomato Broth
250 ml Vegetable stock
1 onion, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
1/4 carrot, grated
handful each fresh basil, sage and thyme (or 1 tsp of the dried equivalent)
1/2 teaspoon red wine vinegar
3 -4 ripe tomatoes
salt and black pepper to season
3 tbsp olive oil
Heat olive oil and add the onion, garlic and a while later the carrot and herbs stalks into saucepan. Cover and let them cook for about 7 minutes, stirring once in a while. Add the tomatoes (chopped) and stock and simmer on low heat for about 15 mins, covered. You can puree it in a blender or mash it in the saucepan with your wooden spoon. I wanted it a bit chunky. Pre heat oven grill at 150C for about 10 mins and transfer soup into bread bowls or ramekins, topped with cheese and cook for about 5 to 7 mins. You can add some croutons into the ramekin before pouring in the soup fr added goodness. Remove and serve hot. Garnish with some fresh basil.