Thursday, July 23, 2009

Uh, gazpacho, por favor....

I know, it's Spanish. I'm not particularly anti-Spain, but realize that Europe didn't have tomatoes until the Conquistadors took them back from the Americas, as they are native to South America, and have been grown in Mexico since prehistory.
But it's a great refreshing chilled summer soup, the primary ingredients being awesome tomatoes, cucumbers, and salt. There are plenty of other things you can put in it, and you can alter the flavors widely. Warning: as with most tomato dishes, the difference between good and great is the quality of the tomatoes.
The other consideration is whether you want something crunchy, or you want it pureed. You can also do both by pureeing the soup and adding tableside garnishes as your additives.

Thanks to CLG for doing most of the work on this one.

Heirloom tomato gazpacho
1 large brandywine tomato, approx 1.5 lbs, diced
1 medium cucumber, peeled, not seeded
1 each of green, yellow, and red bell pepper, seeded and diced
1/4 cup of good quality olive oil
1/4 cup of minced cilantro
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and finely minced
salt to taste
juice of 1 lime
12 oz of V8. You can skip this step and add more tomato or water if you'd like. Don't worry, the V8 did nothing to hide the rich flavor of the tomato.

Other additives could be onions and garlic. If you puree the soup but you still want a little crunch, serve garnish of fresh diced tomato, bell pepper of your choice, and onion at the tableside. What goes better with this than grilled bread? Not much, and you can also use stale bread to thicken the soup. You can puree in batches, add a piece of stale bread if you want to give it a little more thickness.

CUSTOMER: Uh, gazpacho, por favor.

SOUP NAZI: Por favor?

CUSTOMER: Um, I'm part Spanish.

SOUP NAZI: Adios muchacho!

From Drop Box

1 comment:

MAB said...

I knew there was a reason I love Spanish food, but hate tomatoes.