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Simple Gazpacho

Simple Gazpacho

Ingredients

  • 1/2 loaf yesterday's French bread
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 3/4 Cups extra-virgin olive oil
  • 8 Pounds tomatoes, preferably local, seeded and cut into large chunks (8-12 tomatoes)
  • 1 green bell pepper, cut into large pieces
  • 1 Italian frying pepper, cut into large pieces
  • 1 jalapeño, seeded and cut into large pieces
  • 1 cucumber, peeled and cut into large chunks
  • 1 medium-sized Spanish onion, cut into large chunks
  • 1 Tablespoon salt
  • 1 Teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 Cup sherry vinegar
  • Chopped tomatoes, green bell pepper, and onion, for garnish

Directions

Using your hands, break the bread into big chunks and soak in a bowl of water for 10 minutes.

Squeeze the excess water out of the bread and transfer to the bowl of a food processor. Add the garlic and oil and process until smooth. Add the tomatoes, peppers, cucumber, onion, salt, and cumin. Process until you achieve a smooth consistency. Add the vinegar and process for 30 seconds. Blend in 1 ½-2¼ cups cold water, depending on the desired consistency, and refrigerate until ready to serve.

To serve, divide the gazpacho among 8 bowls and garnish with chopped tomatoes, green pepper, and onion.

Nutritional Facts

Servings8

Calories Per Serving278

Folate equivalent (total)63µg16%


Mild and Easy Gazpacho

This Mild and Easy Gazpacho recipe retains the qualities of the better-known version while making it more palatable and digestible.

It shouldn't be cause for surprise that both Ilana and I are very big fans of Spanish food: We both have a cultural connection to the country, albeit from very different perspectives. Spanish cuisine is one of the cornerstones of our own culinary traditions, and many dishes are common or similar.

My visits to Spain proved just how much I love its food, and it's in my list of countries where I intend to spend more time at some point in the future.

Gazpacho, however, has no equivalent in our cuisine, and never was amongst my favorite dishes. That was until a few years ago when I came across a version of a mild and easy gazpacho that made me a convert. I have long forgotten where I tried it, but I still have great memories of it. Let me share it with you.

Gazpacho, as you may know it, it's a cold tomato-based soup. Cold, as in served at room temperature, or slightly chilled.

I am not sure why it hasn't become more popular amongst Dominicans, after all a cold soup is a great idea for a light lunch in the blistering heat of our summers. And summer here lasts longer than elsewhere, or so I am led to believe.

We need to come up with more summer dishes like this.

My problem with most gazpachos is that, because of the raw onion and garlic, the taste can be overwhelming and it leaves you with dragon breath long after you've eaten it. I also dislike the blended version, this is a soup that should work better with something to chew on. Luckily I am not violating some secret rule of gazpacho-making there actually is a traditional version that just requires the ingredients to be pureed with a mortar, which is the way it was made before electric appliances even existed.

The trick to the "mild" part of this soup is that the ingredients are briefly cooked over low heat, just enough to get rid of the most pungent flavors, allowing you to appear in public shortly thereafter without exposing everyone you talk to deadly fumes.

And while this requireS a bit of cooking, it takes nearly the same time as the uncooked version, and can be served in just a matter of minutes.


Ingredients

You'll only need a few simple ingredients to make this refreshing soup. The exact measurements are included in the recipe card below. Here's an overview of what you'll need:

Vegetables and herbs: Celery, red onion, cilantro, garlic, and canned tomato sauce.

Olive oil: I highly recommend using a high-quality extra-virgin olive oil in this recipe. It really does make a difference.

Fresh lemon juice: Freshly squeezed is best. I don't recommend using bottled lemon juice.

Red wine vinegar: White wine vinegar also works, as does champagne vinegar. Just don't use distilled white vinegar - it's too acidic.

Kosher salt and black pepper: If using fine salt, you should reduce the amount you use, or the soup could end up too salty.

Spices: I use paprika, cumin, and cayenne pepper. You can use smoked paprika if you'd like and maybe add a pinch of dried thyme or oregano.


Best Gazpacho Recipe Tips

  • Good tomatoes are gold. This gazpacho recipe calls for a whole lotta tomatoes: 2 1/2 pounds! They make up the body of the soup, so the quality of your tomatoes will really affect the final dish. If you can, look for local tomatoes at your farmers market. But no matter what, make this recipe in summer, when any tomato is sweeter and juicier than it would be at other times of year.
  • Work in batches if necessary. This recipe makes a lot of soup, so you might need to work in batches depending on the size of your blender or food processor. Of course, you could also halve the recipe, but I like having leftovers in the fridge. The soup becomes more complex and flavorful the longer it chills, so it tastes even better on days 2 and 3!
  • Chill the soup for at least 2 hours before you eat. It might be tempting to cut the chilling time short, but trust me, the wait is worth it! After the flavors meld and develop in the fridge, the soup becomes more balanced, complex, and refreshing.

Tips on how to produce the best tasting cold soup EVER!

There are so many different ways to make gazpacho. Depending on what vegetables are fresh and in-season at the time, as well as one's personal preference on eating raw veggies, the variztions can be endless.

I've experimented a lot with gazpacho, always tweaking it here and there. Sometimes I add a little bit of the sweeter tasting red pepper in place of the typical green pepper and other times I add more cucumbers for a lighter and fresher flavor. One thing I NEVER DO is add onions. To me, onions add too much of a peppery bite and can sometimes overpower the delicate flavor of the soup.

The last few years, I've also started double blanching the fresh garlic cloves in my recipe. That was a tip I picked up several years ago after reading about the gazpacho from the famed Spanish (former) restaurant, elBulli. Blanching the cloves reduces the harsh taste that fresh garlic an sometimes have and it mellows the flavor.


Once you’ve got all your ingredients together, all you have to do is place everything in a blender and puree it until smooth! (photo 1 & 2)

It’s literally that simple! After pureeing, the waiting game begins.

I recommend letting the soup chill in the fridge for at least 4 hours to really help the flavors come together and develop. After that, serve with some croutons or crusty bread, a drizzle of olive oil, halved cherry tomatoes if you’ve got some fresh ones from the garden and eat up!


  • Author: Christine Pittman
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: 6 servings

Description

This refreshing recipe calls for canned diced tomatoes. But in summertime, if you have garden-fresh tomatoes, use those instead. Instead of the 2 large cans of diced tomatoes, use 5 cups of diced fresh tomatoes and two cups of liquid (tomato juice or vegetable/chicken broth). To make this soup in under 15 minutes first read through the recipe. As you read gather together all of the ingredients, tools, pots and pans that you’ll need so that everything is within reach. But don’t do any prep. All of the prep is included in the recipe and counts towards the 15 minutes.


What is Gazpacho?

Gazpacho is simply a chilled tomato soup. I’ve had both chunky varieties like this one and smooth….like a restaurant style salsa.

What I love the most about every gazpacho recipe I’ve ever tried is that you can literally throw in just about any chopped vegetable you love. I try to find whatever is in season at the moment for maximum flavor. For this Easy Gazpacho recipe I used bell pepper, cucumbers, plum tomatoes, garlic and jalapeño- for a little kick.

If you stick with in-season produce, you’ll end up with the best gazpacho recipe you’ve ever made. The summer fresh flavors will be at their peak.

I have a little secret to pump up the flavor a bit more. I add a splash of Worcestershire sauce to add a little more oomph to the soup. It just adds a good bang of flavor to this vegetable- based soup.


11 Gazpacho Recipes for When It’s Way Too Hot to Cook

When the weather dares to hit the triple digits, it’s impossible to justify turning on the oven (or even the grill). Luckily, there is one incredibly easy-to-make dish with endless variations that has no cooking involved, ever: gazpacho.

Usually made with a tomato base, gazpacho can be any soup made with a combo of raw vegetables or fruits, served cold—perfect for those extra hot days when it’s too gross to move.

Just grab your blender, raid your crisper drawer, and prepare to be refreshed.

Vitamix A2300 Series Ascent Blender, $449.95 from Williams Sonoma

The ultimate no-cook kitchen tool.

1. Watermelon Gazpacho

Have some leftover watermelon from a recent BBQ? Our Watermelon Gazpacho recipe is a refreshing summer soup and the perfect option to use up that extra fruit—but it’s worth buying a new one just to make it, too. (Scroll down for another version that incorporates fennel and pickled watermelon rind for garnish.)

2. Basic Tomato Gazpacho

Think of the classic dish from Andalusia, Spain, just simplified. To make this soup, all you need are some fresh vegetables, oil, vinegar, and tomato juice. Get our Basic Tomato Gazpacho recipe.

3. Cucumber and Green Grape Gazpacho

Cucumbers are a staple of the summer garden, so put them to good use with our recipe for cucumber gazpacho. The cucumbers are paired with green grapes, olive oil, sherry vinegar, almonds, and sweet baguette. Since green grapes can be on the sour side, give them a taste first and adjust the vinegar as needed. Get our Cucumber and Green Grape Gazpacho recipe.

4. Daniel Humm’s Peach Gazpacho with Toasted Almonds

Looking for a dish to impress your guests? Try out Chef Daniel Humm’s (James Beard Winner, chef / owner of Eleven Madison Park) go-to summer dish. While you can use any fresh, seasonal fruits or vegetables, this version takes advantage of late-summer peaches that will soon be at the market. Get Daniel Humm’s Peach Gazpacho recipe.

5. Chilled Avocado, Cucumber, and Kefir Soup

While this isn’t called gazpacho, it basically is, or at least shares gazpacho’s most notable and important trait: It involves zero cooking, just blending fresh ingredients together and chilling. The combo of creamy avocado, tangy kefir, and refreshing cucumbers is positively invigorating, yet also soothing and lush. Get the Chilled Avocado, Cucumber, and Kefir Soup recipe. (But if you don’t do dairy, try this Raw Vegan Gazpacho recipe instead.)

6. Sweet Corn Gazpacho

This dairy-free soup is chock-full of fresh, sweet, summer corn. Top with cooked shrimp or crab meat if you want a little something extra, and garnish with fresh basil or cilantro and some reserved corn kernels. Get the Sweet Corn Gazpacho recipe.

7. Green Cucumber Tomatillo Gazpacho

Knock out a few healthy servings of vegetables with this recipe. The soup gets its muted green color from cucumbers, cilantro, tomatillos, and a little jalapeño, but there is nothing muted about the flavors. Get the Green Cucumber Tomatillo Gazpacho recipe.

8. Carrot Gazpacho with Coconut Milk

Carrots and coconut milk form the base of this vibrant vegan option. Just roughly chop the veggies and toss them in a blender with garlic, ginger, tomato paste, and a few other ingredients, give it a couple quick spins, and voila: vegetable smoothie gazpacho! Get the Carrot Gazpacho with Coconut Milk recipe.

9. Cantaloupe Gazpacho with Crispy Prosciutto

For something a little different, blend a ripe cantaloupe into a refreshing, slightly sweet soup with salty, crispy prosciutto garnish (which, yes, technically requires a little cooking, but is so worth it). Yogurt, shallots, sherry vinegar, and cucumber help temper the melon’s sweetness too, so you’re definitely still in savory territory. Get the Cantaloupe Gazpacho recipe.

10. Summer Stone Fruit Gazpacho

Thanks to modern day agriculture, stone fruits—soft-fleshed fruits with a center seed—are generally available year round. But if you are looking for the fresh, local stuff, now through early September is your best time. This recipe from Apron Strings features peaches, plums, and cherries. Get the Summer Stone Fruit Gazpacho recipe.


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