I always order gazpacho soup when it’s on a summer restaurant menu. There is something consistently refreshing about its chilled, tomatoey consistency, drizzle of a quality olive oil, and chopped summer veggies for some texture variety. Although I usually like to start my dining out with a salad, this all-vegetable Easy Summer Gazpacho soup easily takes the place of that plant-rooted (no pun intended) craving.
This recipe has been a staple in my family for years and consistently receives compliments by all guests when served at big party or family function. I especially enjoyed making it this time around with a colorful assortment of heirloom tomatoes. I recommend serving with a sliced french baguette topped with fresh ricotta or goat cheese. If you own a quality olive oil and balsamic vinegar, I suggest using those here too. Craving some spice? Add a dash of hot sauce before ladling out portions.
One last thing: if you are not a cold soup lover but enjoy tomato sauce, definitely give this recipe a try. I’m not one for cold vegetable soups generally either, but this is just a really refreshing twist on tomato sauce (or tomato soup) for a hot summer day. Plus, the chunky vegetables give real substance to the soup. Enjoy!
Easy Summer Gazpacho (from Health Magazine Jul/Aug 2005 issue)
Yield: 8 Servings
4 cups tomato juice (such as Campbell’s Organic Tomato juice)
2 cups chopped seeded tomato
1 3/4 cups chopped seeded unpeeled cucumber
1 cup finely chopped yellow bell pepper
1 cup finely chopped red bell pepper
1/2 cup finely chopped red onion
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
1. Combine all ingredients except basil in a large bowl; cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes (or up to 24 hours) before serving.
2. Ladle the gazpacho into soup bowls, top with basil. Optional: Serve with toasted sliced baguette topped with goat or ricotta cheese.
The exuberant Israeli chef
Try quinoa, amaranth, millet, and sorghum
Velvety, earthy, and confident
How to live like Julia Child