Yield: 8 servings
Bring large pot of water to boil. Drop in tomatoes; poach 20 seconds. Drain tomatoes under cold water; peel and discard skins. Cut tomatoes in half; squeeze out seeds. Chop tomatoes; set aside. Discard water.
Scrub clams and place in a large soup pot.
Add water to cover clams and cover with lid. Cook clams over moderate heat 4 to 5 minutes or until they open. Discard any unopened clams. Chop clam meat and set aside; discard clam shells.
Strain broth through cheesecloth and reserve 5 cups of liquid.
Wash soup pot and add olive oil. Add onion and leek and cook over moderate heat about 2 minutes. Add carrots and celery and cook another 2 to 3 minutes. Add reserved liquid, chopped tomatoes, tomato puree, bay leaf, basil, and salt and pepper to taste.
Bring to a simmer and cook 45 minutes. Add beans and cook another 4 to 5 minutes. Add clams and cook 2 to 3 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste. Discard bay leaf.
Please note that some ingredients and brands may not be available in every store.