It’s HOT outside! The kind of hot that makes your makeup melt off and your clothes stick to you. The kind of hot that begs for gallons of iced tea to be in the fridge and for ceiling fans to assist the AC in doing its job. The kind of hot that makes people start thinking about making gazpacho….well, at least that’s what happens to ME!
Isn’t it convenient that just when the summer heat hits its peak, so too does the produce at the farmer’s market? It makes this gazpacho all the better.
For the uninitiated, gazpacho is a cold, tomato-based, often spicy, vegetable soup that can be pureed or left chunky. My personal preference is for the chunky version – the kind where you can still identify the vegetables that were used to create it. This one, which I’ve adapted from a Barefoot Contessa recipe, perfectly suits my style.
Be sure to make this before the summer produce starts to wane…then kick back on your patio or deck and serve this gorgeous soup in clear glass bowls to show off its colors and sheen. Top each bowl with a dollop of sour cream or Greek Yogurt and a sprinkle of freshly cut herbs. Open a bottle of a simple white wine (a Chenin Blanc perhaps) and toast to the heat of summer. Aaah.
adapted from The Barefoot Contessa Cookbook
2 English cucumbers, seeded
3 red peppers, cored and seeded
6 heirloom tomatoes
1 large red onion
6 garlic cloves, minced
6 cups tomato juice (buy the best quality you can find)
1/2 cup white (or red) wine vinegar
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 Tbsp. kosher salt
1 1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
Roughly chop the cucumbers, peppers, tomatoes and onions into 1″ cubes. Separately put each vegetable into a food processor and pulse until coarsely chopped (be careful not to puree!).
After each vegetable is processed, combine them in a large bowl and add the garlic, tomato juice, vinegar, olive oil, salt and pepper. Mix well and chill before serving.
Garnish each bowl with a dollop of sour cream or Greek yogurt and a sprinkle of freshly cut herbs.