June 2, 2010

Easiest Gazpacho Ever


It's been a hot few days here in NYC, the perfect weather for a cold and refreshing soup. Gazpacho happens to be one of my favorites. So satisfying and full of flavor. Yum!

I came up with this recipe about 2 or 3 summers ago and have made some sort of variation of it almost every summer weekend ever since. With a base of tomato, cucumber, cilantro, bell peppers and shallots, you can add which ever additional flavors you'd like to come up with something special. This recipe also happens to be ridiculously easy. Just throw the base ingredients in a blender or food processor & puree. Then chop the add-ins and throw in just before servings. Quick, simple and a great way to impress guests with new flavors!

Some notes about this recipe:
  1. For the base, I used canned diced tomatoes so the overall flavor of this soup will be impacted significantly by the tomatoes used. My favorites are Whole Foods or Hunts brands. Remember to use plain diced tomatoes without any seasonings since you'll add your own flavors.
  2. I call this the "easiest ever" gazpacho because I use my food processor or blender for almost all preparation. I first puree the base ingredients and place them in the refrigerator to chill and let the flavors blend together while I prepare the add-ins. I then roughly chop my add-ins and set them aside until I'm ready to serve.
  3. My add-ins always include both fruits and veggies. Fruits are a great way to add incredible flavor and variety to this soup. My mixing it up, you can come up with something new & delicious as often as you'd like. You can also make a huge batch of the base and serve it with different add-ins each day of the week for variety.
  4. I always use cilantro in my soup base because I love the flavor. But turns out there are lots of folks out there that don't love it as much. Feel free to substitute the cilantro with whichever fresh herbs your palette desires. Mint, dill, and parsley work particularly well in gazpacho.
  5. This is a great make-ahead recipe, especially for guests on a hot summer night. Just make the base, chop your add-ins and refrigerate. Toss in your add-ins just before serving so they don't get soggy.
  6. I usually serve my gazpacho with a wedge of lime to squeeze on time. I love the acidity of the lime against the fruit and fresh herbs.
Summer Gazpacho Recipe
Step 1:
Puree the following ingredients in your food processor or blender
  • 1 28 oz can of diced tomatoes
  • 1 large cucumber, peeled
  • 1 large green bell pepper, seeded
  • 1/2 cup fresh cilantro, washed well
  • 1/2 small shallot
  • 1/4 cup of any other fresh herbs your heart desires. I included a handful of fresh mint this time around- delicious!
This is your base. Remove it from your blender/processor and place in a container to chill in the fridge.

Step 2:
Dice or chop your add-ins. Depending on the ingredient, you may even be able to use you food processor for this step. This week, I added fresh peaches and raw sweet corn. Some other ideas you might enjoy:
  • Watermelon
  • Granny Smith Apples
  • Grapes: Green or Red. Both are delicious!
  • Mango
  • Plums
  • Red, Yellow, and/or Orange Bell Peppers
  • Scallions
  • Avocado
  • Cucumber
  • Yellow Tomatoes
Add as many or as few flavors and have fun experimenting.

Step 3:
Pour in a bow, season with salt if necessary, and devour!

5 comments :

  1. This looks so good for this hot weather! I don't know about you but my apt is a million degrees all of the time. I CAN'T wait to make this! :)

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  2. Thanks Nicole. Seriously! My apartment has been sweltering!

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  3. I love your blog! Can't wait to try this recipe. :)

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  4. Thanks Carolina Girl! Just checked out your blog- fabulous!

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  5. That looks amazing! When I lived in Spain I used to eat Gazpacho daily.. I miss it! I may give this a try!

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