Latin Twist: Gazpacho

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GAZPACHO

 

Even before I lived in Barcelona, I loved gazpacho! Actually it was my mom, who was always on the culinary cutting edge, who made gazpacho for me for the first time! Then, when I was visiting Southern Spain, I had the pleasure of sampling several versions of this classic chilled soup. More recently, while visiting Miami, I had the delight of sampling amazing Chef Michelle Bernstein’s almond and white grape gazpacho…Wow! But that’s another story!

Back to the classic version, I found this in one of my old, totally beaten up, classic reference books: Clarita’s Cocina, which I bought when I returned from my first stint in Spain. I’ve been making it ever since! Often referred to as sopa de ensalada  (salad soup), gazpacho varies according to region and family! But there are three items that are usually present: ripe tomatoes, olive oil, and garlic which, as you know are found in abundance in Andalucia! This version was created with gorgeous local orange, yellowish and red heirloom tomatoes. I did not include the chicken stock that is present in some versions. And honestly I didn’t add sugar because the local-farm tomatoes, pepper, and cucumber were so amazingly sweet.

I would love to hear your gazpacho tales! Until then, ¡Buen provecho! Enjoy!

Latin Twist: Gazpacho

Yield: 6 servings

A perfect starter for a late summer barbecue, this classic chilled tomato soup is also a great side dish for lunch or a light dinner!

Ingredients

  • 6 large ripe tomatoes (a mixture of heirloom tomatoes is nice!)
  • 1 medium cucumber, peeled and coarsely chopped
  • 1 garlic clove minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon sweet paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 scallions or one small red onion, chopped
  • 1/2 medium green pepper
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons wine vinegar
  • 1/4 teaspoon hot sauce (or to taste)
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed oregano
  • 1 cup toasted bread crumbs
  • Croutons and/or parsley for garnish

Instructions

  1. Coarsely chop the tomatoes.
  2. In a food processor, combine the tomatoes, cucumber, garlic,
  3. paprika, sugar, salt, scallions, and green pepper.
  4. Combine the olive oil, vinegar, hot sauce, oregano, and bread crumbs.
  5. Add to the vegetables and blend for 1 minute (you may have to do this in batches!).
  6. Cover and chill thoroughly (ideally overnight).
  7. When ready to serve, if soup is too thick, add a bit of water, or chilled broth to get a good purée consistency.
  8. Serve with toasted croutons or simply some fresh parsley.
http://food.lohudblogs.com/2014/09/05/latin-twist-gazpacho/
Gazpacho Andaluz

Makes about 6 servings

6 large ripe tomatoes (a mixture of heirloom tomatoes is nice!)
1 medium cucumber, peeled and coarsely chopped
1 garlic clove minced
1/2 teaspoon sweet paprika
1/2 teaspoon sugar (optional)
1 teaspoon salt
2 scallions or one small red onion, chopped
1/2 medium green pepper
1/4 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons wine vinegar
1/4 teaspoon hot sauce (or to taste)
1/4 teaspoon crushed oregano
1 cup toasted bread crumbs
Croutons and/or parsley for garnish

Coarsely chop the tomatoes.
In a food processor, combine the tomatoes, cucumber, garlic,
paprika, sugar, salt, scallions, and green pepper.
Combine the olive oil, vinegar, hot sauce, oregano, and bread crumbs.
Add to the vegetables and blend for 1 minute (you may have to do this in batches!).
Cover and chill thoroughly (ideally overnight).
When ready to serve, if soup is too thick, add a bit of water, or chilled broth to get a good purée consistency.
Serve with toasted croutons or simply some fresh parsley.

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About Author

Maybe it was the dinner parties my mom always threw—or the hours I spent prepping and cooking alongside her (and then on my own!). Or maybe it was array of fabulous dishes that my family sampled in New York City’s richly diverse restaurants, but I’ve loved creating, savoring, and sharing food for as long as I can remember. Living in Spain, and later in Peru, also greatly influenced my life. These years abroad taught me Spanish—and about living in different countries--but also introduced me to teaching English as a second language, which I’ve done—mostly in the US-- for the past 20-plus (yikes!) years. I’ve authored two cocktail/tapas books, Mambo Mixers and Calypso Coolers, coauthored more than 15 others (mostly food related!), and raised two children. Now I'm chef and owner of my own restaurant, Mambo 64 in Tuckahoe, New York. My message is the same, whether I'm teaching, writing, running the restaurant or being a regular guest on the Spanish-language network Telemundo (on the morning show, Buenos Días Nueva York!). My belief in food—and the power of food—is far reaching, and is married with another one: the power of stories. I’m sure that if we could all sit down and have meals together, sharing both tastes and tales, we’d have peace on earth. Enjoy!

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