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Sunday, August 23, 2009


Gazpacho is interesting for many reasons, but the primaries are that it's amazingly simple, good and versatile. It originated in Spain and can be made so many ways. I've even seen a recipe for White Almond Gazpacho. I think people are used to seeing it with thick chunks of tomato and cucumber, but that didn't sound appetizing to me. How I made it is how I wanted it, so if you don't like it, don't try it.

1.5 pounds vine-ripe tomatoes
1 cucumber, skinned, seeds removed
1/2 red bellpepper
7 cloves garlic
2 handfulls of the inside of French bread (i.e., no crust), soaked in water and slightly squeezed of liquid
1/4 cup white wine vinegar
A few solid glugs of good olive oil

Chop everything course and throw it in a processor. You might need to work in two batches, because you don't want the liquid shooting out the top! Process it until it's as smooth as you can get. If you study recipes, you find some that have you peel the tomatoes before they get processed - that's your call. I prefer the taste that comes from skins left on, and the cheesecloth deals with the solids left over. I also have a good feeling (though I haven't confirmed this yet), that if you roasted the tomatoes, red bell pepper, and garlic first, this would be even more amazing. Let me know if you try that on.

Lay out cheesecloth across small colander, and pour a batch into the cheesecloth. Strain this over a large bowl, squeezing out as much liquid as possible. Work with as many batches as you need until you have only liquid in the bowl. Meanwhile, get a large cup of ice water going and stir it into the liquid, to taste. You might need to adjust the vinegar, salt and pepper at this point also.

Stick it in the fridge for at least 1 hour before serving. Garnish with 1/2 cucumber skinned and chopped. Some like to add ice into their soup - I don't.


~ Brock

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