Gazpacho

Gazpacho & porch flowers, basil 013 (640x480)The beauty of gazpacho is its simplicity and its timeliness –  a perfect cold soup for August when all the ingredients are ripe. Below is the basic recipe – ingredients can be added or replaced depending on your taste.  

I prefer not to add garlic or onions, but that’s a personal choice. Also, the vinegar can be replaced by red wine, and the amount of cucumbers can vary. Sometimes I make it without red pepper for a different taste.  Don’t rush while preparing the ingredients – savor summer as you dice tomatoes, cucumbers and the red pepper, and add the fresh basil!


INGREDIENTS

Place the following ingredients in the blender:

  • Gazpacho & porch flowers, basil 002 (640x480)Two diced and peeled cucumbers – I prefer Kirby cucumbers
  • Two diced large tomatoes – very ripe
  • One diced red pepper
  • Fresh basil – leaves of one sprig
  • A tsp (or more) of dried cilantro per taste
  • 2 tsps of fresh lime juice
  • 2 tsps of vinegar – I use the wonderfully flavorful vinegar infused with blackberries from a shop in Frenchtown – gives the gazpacho a fruity, tangy summer taste
  • Gazpacho & porch flowers, basil 009 (640x480)Dash of salt, pepper, celery seed & cumin
  • Blend for one minute for a smooth soup – or only chop for a more textured soup
  • Chill and serve in small bowls with any of the following garnishes: diced cucumber, diced red pepper, croutons and/or shredded Monterey Jack cheese

Serves 4 to 6 people as an appetizer.

Gazpacho & porch flowers, basil 012 (640x480)For the second course, I recommend an excellent pasta with fresh vegetables and goat cheese, roasted chicken with herbs and lemon – both served cold – followed by corn on the cob.  

For dessert: peach cake and ice cream.  

Beverage: serve meal with Sangria or crisp, cold sparkling Prosecco or Cava and a pitcher of iced water with fresh limes and fresh mint.

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Gazpacho & porch flowers, basil 005 (640x480)