My husband loves to feel like he's eating healthy. Since he is definitely not the foodie in the family (he can make an omelet, and that’s it), he doesn’t really know what eating healthy means. One thing he does know is that when summer starts, the gazpacho is in the fridge, and he eats it up like it's going out of style. There is something so incredibly refreshing about eating a cold soup in the summer- but even more refreshing when that soup is made from completely fresh, uncooked vegetables. What could be a healthier? I love making him feel like he's eating healthy, and watching him finish the whole pot within two days (it really is that good).
This version is adapted from Thomas Keller's version in his book "The French Laundry", named after his famous restaurant in Napa Valley, California. I'll be flying home (to Los Angeles) in a month and am looking forward to being inspired by some of the great restaurants, produce and products available. Any suggestions, new spots, or things I can't miss are greatly appreciated...Enjoy,
I don't provide here a recipe for making the croutons- because it really is the easiest thing to do. Grab any type of bread you have at home. Cut or break it into small pieces, toss with olive oil and salt and bake for about 15 minutes until golden and crispy. I had some pumpernickel bread at home which I used, and they came out sweet and crisp.
Ingredients for 6-8 servings:
2 small red onions, chopped
2 red bell peppers, chopped
3 Persian cucumbers
3 large tomatoes, peeled and chopped
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1½ teaspoons salt
½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
¼ cup tomato paste
¼ cup good quality olive oil
1 tablespoon vinegar
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
3 cups tomato juice (store bought)
2 sprigs thyme
- Place all ingredients in a large soup pot, mix and cover with lid and refrigerate for at least 6 hours, preferably overnight.
- Remove the thyme sprigs and blend all the ingredients using a hand blender until the gazpacho is smooth. Taste and season accordingly.
- Top with croutons and serve cold. Soup can be kept in an air tight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.
- Chop all vegetables (onions, peppers, tomatoes, cucumbers) to around the same size so that they have equal surface area.
- You can blend this soup right away without refrigerating it overnight, but you will really lose out on some major flavor enhancement.
- Pour a few drops of hot sauce (Tabasco, Cholula) into each dish before serving for those who like it hot.