From Too Many Chefs - www.toomanychefs.com

June 1, 2006
It's Getting to be Gazpacho Season

Gazpacho I'm currently on vacation in North America and it seems that summer is here after completely bypassing spring. A few weeks ago it was downright cold but in the northeast this week, temperatures have been in the upper 90s. How hot was it? Our friend Sweth ended up in the ER with dehydration and an overheated engine. I was thinking about what we could cook up that would be cold and hydrating. Clearly, gazpacho was in order. The recipe is pretty much taken from wikibooks, although we left out the bread (purists may gasp, but we couldn't wait around for bread to go stale, and besides, soggy bread makes me want to vomit, just a little bit). We put it with some sides of roquefort on toasts and various olives. Perfect. Just what the doctor ordered.

Gazpacho from wikibooks, slightly tweaked
1 lb /450 g tomatoes
1/2 lb / 225 g green peppers
1/2 cucumber
a few cilantro leaves
clove of garlic
1/2 jalapeno pepper
1/2 mild Spanish onion
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
2 tbsp olive oil
Sea salt and black pepper
Handful of ice cubes
1/3 cup water

Garnish
2 tomatoes, skinned
1/2 green pepper
1/4 peeled cucumber
2 slices stale white bread, crusts removed

Method
Skin the tomatoes if you want [we didn't] and cut into quarters. Remove seeds and stalks from peppers. Peel the cucumber and cut into chunks. Cut up the onion.

Blend all the ingredients until roughly chopped, not too fine, because the soup should have texture and discernible vegetable bits. You may want to leave some veggies chopped finely off to the side to add into the soup after you are done with the blending, for texture. Pour into large bowl with some ice [we just put the ice in the blender], add salt and pepper. Then prepare the garnishes. Chop the other vegetables finely. Serve in separate little bowls on the table, so that guests can sprinkle on their own toppings.

Serve chilled, preferably on a hot day and within sight of the sea.

Posted by Justin in Bogotá at June 1, 2006 7:45 AM
Comments

Comments are working again.

Posted by barrett on June 5, 2006 at 11:30 PM

Finally, comments get fixed! I've been waiting to set the record straight here. For reference, there was in fact stale bread in the fridge; Justin just "forgot" to use it, and that after trying to weasel out of using it because it was stale French bread rather than white bread as the recipe called for. Clearly, he was just opposed to bread in his 'pacho. I think it's better when starched up, myself; if you go that route, remember to soak the bread briefly in cold water and then squeeze the excess out before adding it to the blender.

Also, you may need more water to get your blender spinning well; the bread does a good job of soaking up that excess if you have to go that route. Another alternative is to chop half of the the veggies a lot finer so that they get pureed more easily and provide the water needed to get the big chunks spinning in the blender.

Lastly: a dash or three of Tabasco or Tabasco green on top really brings this to life.

Posted by Sweth on June 5, 2006 at 11:36 PM