Gazpacho is a seasonal pleasure. Well, thats stupid. I guess everything in the garden is a “seasonal pleasure” by virtue of how temporary it is. But still, Gazpacho is certainly a pleasure. Few dishes made of your fresh produce can transcend their individual flavors to become such a celebration to your palate. When I eat a really good Gazpacho my synapses tend to fire “summer!” Marathon outdoor card playing, grass stains and bike rides to no-where all come to mind in a blink of an eye.
With your homemade Gazpacho you can really think outside the box too. In a bowl I like mine topped with a dollop of plain yogurt. It doesn’t have to end there though. Its also great as a salsa with tortilla chips or spooned over morning eggs. Mess around with it! Relax!
What follows is a rough “recipe.” Really, the only thing that defines Gazpacho is that its cold, tomato based and (mostly) uncooked. If you are making it and think something additional would taste good you are probably not wrong. Just go for it.
~ ¼ – ½ total volume of soup ought to be uncooked tomato and tomato juice from a purchased can (Be sure to check sodium content of the tomato juice)
~ A couple cloves-a head+ of garlic (to taste). I love garlic so I use a ton. This is the only ingredient I cook before using as it sweetens the taste quite a bit. Crush the clove(s) using the side of a chef’s knife, peel and cook in skillet at medium heat for 5-10 min.
~ Add your favorite vinegar. I go with apple cider vinegar. Start with a little (<¼ cup)and add more to taste. You can ruin the soup if you use too much but the right amount will add a fantastic tangy taste.
~ Some olive oil. It all depends on batch size.
~ ¾-½ other produce. Go crazy! whatever is in you box will be great. Amend with any other produce you want. Strive to use as fresh as ingredients as possible. Here are some thoughts.
-Hot Peppers (chilies, jalapeno, habanero etc)
-beets. They add a wonderful earthiness and color. Go raw
~Chunk all your produce and add in batches with some tomato juice in each batch into your food processor or blender.
~Put into large container. Add salt pepper and cumin. Refrigerate and enjoy.