Put the tomatoes for the consommé
into a very large saucepan. Add the
remaining consommé ingredients, except
the herbs and leaves, then simmer on a
low heat for 2 hrs.
Line a large sieve with cheesecloth. Set
it over a very large bowl, then carefully
pour the liquid through. Leave to slowly
drain but, to ensure the consommé stays
clear, do not press tomatoes. Set aside.
(The tomatoes can be puréed to make a
sauce for pasta, then frozen for later use.)
Put tomatoes for marinating into a small
bowl. Squeeze over a little lemon juice,
dust with the icing sugar and 2 pinches
of salt, then pour over the 2 tsp oil.
Marinate briefly while you prepare the
cheese on toast.
Heat oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6.
Melt the 25g butter in a medium pan,
add the flour, then stir for 2-3 mins over a
low heat to cook the flour. Remove from
heat, then gradually stir in milk. Return to
the heat and stir briefly until thickened to
a thick paste. Stir in the cheese, beating
well until it has melted to a smooth
paste. Take off the heat, beat in the egg
yolk, then set aside. In a small pan, bring
the ale, mustard and Worcestershire
sauce to a boil, then bubble over a high
heat for 8-10 mins until reduced to a thick
consistency (you should have about 1
tbsp thick liquid). Stir this into the cheese
mixture, cover and cool. Melt the 15g
butter. Brush one side of each bread slice
with the butter, lay them on a baking
sheet, butter-side up, then season with
salt. Bake for 10-12 mins until golden and
crisp. (Both sauce and toasted bread can
be prepared a day ahead. Chill sauce until
required, keep toast wrapped in foil.)
To serve, heat the grill. Spread the
cheese mix thickly and evenly over
each slice of toast (you will have some
left over for another time), then lay
them on a baking tray. Grill until golden.
Meanwhile, gently heat the consommé.
Place 3 marinated tomatoes in the
bottom of each serving bowl. Scatter a
few herbs on top of the tomatoes, then
drizzle around a little olive oil. Pour in
enough consommé to just cover the
tomatoes, then scatter over a few more
herbs and leaves. Serve with the hot
cheese on toast on the side.