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Fire-Roasted Tomato Soup, German Cake

DEAR SOS: The roasted tomato soup at El Torito Grill is so good, I think about it between visits. Do you suppose they would share the recipe?

--BETH

DEAR BETH: They did, with this note from Lee Healy, the restaurant’s public relations manager: “The soup has been a favorite of our guests for a few years and even Gourmet magazine asked us for the recipe.” See, you’re in good company.

EL TORITO FIRE-ROASTED TOMATO SOUP

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3 pounds tomatoes

1 (1-ounce) chicken chorizo

1 chile poblano, seeded and diced

1/2 medium onion, diced

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1/4 teaspoon oregano

1 large clove garlic, diced

1 1/2 cups chicken broth or stock

1 cup whipping cream

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Salt

White pepper

Cayenne pepper

1 small ear corn, roasted, kernels removed to equal 1/2 cup

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Crema Fresca

Avocado Sauce

Cilantro sprigs

Scorch tomatoes over charcoal grill, preferably over mesquite. Cool slightly.

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Cook chorizo in large saucepan. Add chile, onion, oregano and garlic and saute until onion is transparent. Add unpeeled tomatoes and chicken broth. Bring to boil. Simmer 10 to 15 minutes. Add cream, salt, white pepper and cayenne.

Puree soup in batches in blender until smooth. Return to pot. Add corn and stir to heat. Ladle into heated bowls. Using separate squeeze bottles, drizzle Crema Fresca and Avocado Sauce over soup, or dollop over soup, if desired. Garnish with cilantro sprigs. Makes 8 to 10 servings.

Each of 8 servings contains about:

265 calories; 269 mg sodium; 57 mg cholesterol; 21 grams fat; 16 grams carbohydrates; 6 grams protein; 1.87 grams fiber.

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Crema Fresca

2/3 cup sour cream

1/3 cup half and half

In bowl mix sour cream and half and half thoroughly. Pour into squeeze bottles, if desired.

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Avocado Sauce

1 large Haas avocado, peeled and diced

1 tablespoon pickled jalapeno juice

1 tablespoon minced cilantro

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1 green onion, chopped

1 serrano chile, chopped

1 clove garlic, diced

Salt

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1/4 cup water, about

Place avocado, jalapeno juice, cilantro, onion, serrano chile, garlic, salt and water in blender container and blend until thick liquid that can be squeezed from bottle is formed. Add more water, if necessary.

DEAR SOS: Do you have the original recipe for the German chocolate cake that was printed on the back of packages of sweet cooking chocolate? I have lost my recipe.

--MRS. SMITH

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DEAR MRS. SMITH: This may come close, if not precisely like the recipe on the packages.

GERMAN CHOCOLATE CAKE

1 (1/4-pound) package sweet cooking chocolate

1/2 cup boiling water

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1 cup butter or margarine

2 cups sugar

4 eggs, separated

1 teaspoon vanilla

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2 1/2 cups flour, sifted

1 teaspoon soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 cup buttermilk

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Coconut-Pecan Frosting

Melt chocolate in boiling water. Cool. In bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add egg yolks, 1 at time, beating after each addition. Add vanilla and melted chocolate and mix until blended. Resift flour with soda and salt. Add sifted dry ingredients alternately with buttermilk, beating after each addition until batter is smooth. Stiffly beat egg whites and fold into batter.

Pour batter into 3 (8- or 9-inch) layer pans, lined on bottoms with wax paper. Bake at 350 degrees 35 to 50 minutes. Cool. Frost top and between layers with Coconut-Pecan Frosting. Makes 16 servings.

Each serving contains about:

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510 calories; 300 mg sodium; 171 mg cholesterol; 29 grams fat; 60 grams carbohydrates; 7 grams protein; 0.36 gram fiber.

Coconut-Pecan Frosting

1 cup evaporated milk

1 cup sugar

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3 egg yolks

1/2 cup butter or margarine

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 (2 1/2-ounce) can flaked coconut

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1 cup chopped pecans

Combine milk, sugar, egg yolks, butter and vanilla in saucepan. Cook over medium heat 12 minutes, stirring constantly, until mixture thickens. Add coconut and pecans. Beat until cool and of spreading consistency.

Only recipes of general interest will be printed. Send recipe request to Culinary SOS, Food Section, The Times, Times Mirror Square, Los Angeles 90053. Include restaurant address when requesting recipes from restaurants. We are unable to answer recipe requests by mail.


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