Chef's Recipes

Roast tomato soup with trahanas, Greek-style yoghurt and basil

Australian Gourmet Traveller recipe for roast tomato soup with trahanas, Greek-style yoghurt and basil by Alpha restaurant in Sydney.

By Peter Conistis
  • 35 mins preparation
  • 1 hr 45 mins cooking plus chilling
  • Serves 4 - 6
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Roast tomato soup with trahanas, Greek-style yoghurt and basil
"Trahanas is a sour-flavoured tiny pebble-shaped pasta made with buttermilk that is generally eaten throughout Greece for breakfast," says Conistis.


  • 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 kg ripe vine-ripened tomatoes, halved
  • 130 ml extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
  • 2 Spanish onions, thinly sliced
  • 3 thyme sprigs
  • 1 tbsp white sugar, plus extra for seasoning
  • 260 gm sheep’s milk yoghurt (see note) (1 cup)
  • 1 small kohlrabi (about 180 gm), coarsely grated
  • ½ cup basil, thinly sliced (loosely packed)
  • 50 gm unsalted butter
  • 195 gm trahanas (see note) (1 cup)
Vegetable stock
  • 100 ml white wine
  • 1 carrot, onion and ripe vine-ripened tomato, coarsely chopped
  • ½ celery stalk, coarsely chopped
  • ½ head of garlic, halved
  • 1 each fresh thyme sprig and bay leaf
  • 1 tsp black peppercorns


  • 1
    For vegetable stock, place ingredients and 1.5 litres water in a saucepan, bring to the boil, then reduce to a simmer until well flavoured (30 minutes). Strain (discard solids) and set aside.
  • 2
    Blanch 3 garlic cloves until just tender (1-2 minutes) and set aside.
  • 3
    Preheat oven to 180C. Place tomatoes in a single layer in an oven dish, drizzle with 100ml oil, scatter onion, thyme and blanched garlic over and season with salt, pepper and a little sugar. Roast until tender and lightly browned (1 hour), then push through a sieve (discard skins and solids).
  • 4
    Meanwhile, combine yoghurt, kohlrabi, basil, remaining oil and remaining garlic in a bowl, season to taste and refrigerate for flavours to combine (1 hour).
  • 5
    Bring 1 litre vegetable stock to the boil in a saucepan. Melt butter in a separate saucepan over medium heat, add trahanas and stir occasionally for 2 minutes. Pour stock over and simmer until trahanas is tender (10-12 minutes). Add tomato liquid and sugar, return to the simmer and season to taste. Serve soup hot or cold with a large dollop of yoghurt and a drizzle of oil.


Note Trahanas and sheep's-milk yoghurt are available from select Greek delicatessens.
Drink Suggestion: 2012 Driopi, Agiorgitiko Rosé, Peloponnese, Greece. Drink suggestion by Vanessa Chant