If you are looking for something a little different to serve up this Summer check out this recipe for Gazpacho (Spanish Cold Soup). This drinkable salad has been around since Roman times and originally consisted of just a mixture of bread, garlic, oil and water seasoned with vinegar or verjus. It was a poor man’s food. Modern cuisine has seen the addition of tomatoes and peppers. But there are heaps of colorful variations including Green gazpacho (eliminates the tomato and adds minced herbs such a basil, mint or parsley) and White gazpachos (which has neither tomatoes nor herbs, but are thickened with ground almonds or pine nuts and sometimes grapes. A famous white version, known as ajo blanco, contains ground almonds, garlic, breadcrumbs, vinegar, olive oil and salt. Below is the recipe for the tomato based version.
4 to 6 servings
- Cucumbers, peeled, seeded and diced — 2
- Bell pepper, chopped — 1
- Onion, chopped — 1
- Garlic, crushed — 2-3 cloves
- Tomatoes, diced — 1 1/2 to 2 pounds
- Water or tomato juice — 1 cup
- Red wine or sherry vinegar — 1/4 cup
- Breadcrumbs — 1/2 to 1 cup
- Olive oil — 1/3 cup
- Salt and pepper — to taste
- Working in batches, puree the cucumbers, pepper, onion and garlic in a food processor or blender until smooth. Strain through a sieve into a large bowl.
- Add the tomatoes to the food processor or blender and puree. Strain through the sieve into the bowl with the cucumber-pepper puree.
- Whisk in the water or tomato juice, breadcrumbs and olive oil. Season with salt and pepper.
- Chill for at least 1-2 hours. Adjust seasoning and serve in a large bowl with any desired garnishes (see below).
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