TIME TO TALK GAZPACHO
Our air conditioner broke last week. Which meant we were demoted to sleeping in the basement for a few nights. On top of that, eating out can be a drag. It’s expensive, and frankly, I was tired of having a salt hangover. We were craving some homemade nourishment, but not interested in adding one more degree to the hot house. It was time to take control. Good thing we have an abundance of juicy tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers and other summer vegetables at the local grocery store. That means one thing my friends: it’s time to talk Gazpacho.
This recipe is a compilation of many I’ve tried over the years. Don’t be shy about exploring; if you like more cucumber or red pepper, go for it! Also, use the best olive oil and vinegar that you can get your hands on, but really it should be what you like.
LET’S GET STARTED.
Gazpacho uses the ‘love apple’ (tomato) as its base. Folks in Spain and Portugal sip this soup all summer to stay refreshed. This is easy to whip up and will last a few days in the refrigerator.
Ingredients (3 servings):
- 4 tomatoes
- 1 cucumber (peeled, or you are welcome to leave the peel on)
- 2 garlic gloves
- 1 small red onion
- 20 ounces of tomato juice
- 1/4 cup of your favorite white or red wine vinegar (I like fancy flavored vinegars like cranberry)
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1/2 tablespoon salt
- 1 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
- A dash of cayenne if you like some heat
- Roughly chop the tomatoes.
- Don’t throw out the tomato juice on the cutting board – that is liquid gold and goes in the mix.
- Have a large bowl on standby.
- Toss the tomatoes and juice in a blender or food processor & pulse for about 10 seconds (still let it have some chunky texture).
- Add tomatoes to your bowl.
- Cube the cucumber, the deseeded pepper and the onion.
- Process each vegetable separately.
- Then mix all the pulsed veggies into your bowl.
- Add the minced garlic, tomato juice, vinegar, olive oil, salt and pepper.
- Mix it all up, put it in the fridge to chill and allow the flavors to emerge.
If you want it colder, you can serve it in a chilled bowl or a glass. Some crusty bread goes well with this, or serve up a side of cold chicken or a turkey.
UNTIL NEXT TIME, STAY COOL!
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– KELLEY COLIHAN ROBERTSON, E-RYT