Saturday, April 17, 2010
Gazpacho is one of my favorite summer time treats. Savored with a crisp white wine under the heat of a blazing sun -- could there be anything better? Recent research also tells me that it pairs magnificently with a grilled cheese sandwich.
I realize that it is not yet summer (wishful thinking, I guess), even though today in sunny CA it is breezy and in the 70s - the kind of weather from which young romances blossom. The reason that I am posting this recipe unseasonably early is that I am prepping for a class that I will be teaching with Chef Becca Alonzi of Seasonal Elegance Catering. Beginning in June, Becca and I will be molding young minds (and hands) at Celsius and Beyond Summer Camp. Becca is the real mastermind behind the project, and I will be assisting her one day a week on Bread Day! Although gazpacho is not bread per se, it is derived from a tried and true method of using up dried out, crusty bread. So, there you have it. Tuck this one away in your virtual recipe box, and pull it out as soon as the sun begins to warm your neck of the world -- keeping the wine for yourself, of course, not the kids!
Makes 1 Gallon
(Chop the veggies roughly. There is no need for perfection here since all will end up whirring in the blender.)
4 slices stale bread, chopped
10 tomatoes, cored and chopped
2 green bell peppers, stemmed, seeded and chopped
1 cucumber, chopped
1 red onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, smashed
1/4 cup vinegar
1/2 cup olive oil
1/2 cup water
Salt and pepper, to taste
1/2 cucumber, peeled and finely chopped (for garnish)
1. In a large bowl, combine all ingredients except for cucumber garnish.
2. Working in small batches, blend the soup in a food processor until smooth.
3. With a food mill or a fine mesh sieve, strain the soup.
4. Taste for seasoning, and add more salt and pepper, if you like. Garnish with cucumbers. Serve ice cold.