Gazpacho - Spanish cold tomato Soup Summer

On a hot summer day in Napa this is the perfect starter for a dinner party or a quick lunch. Tangy, tart and refreshing make extra, it keeps for a week in the refrigerator. Use yellow tomatoes in place of the red tomatoes, to make it yellow you need to make your own yellow tomato juice; you will need to buy a couple more pounds of yellow tomatoes to make the juice. Serve with Groth Sauvignon Blanc.

Serves 6

3 cups organic tomato juice
1/2 cup crustless stale 1/2-inch bread (Italian or French) cubes, soaked in water until soft
1/2 cup onions, chopped
1/2 cup green pepper, chopped
1/2 cup peeled, seeded and sliced cucumber
2-3 (1 pound) red ripe tomatoes, peeled, seeded, and roughly chopped
1 clove garlic, sliced thin
1 teaspoon ground cumin
kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste
1/3 cup Atlas Peak extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon sherry wine vinegar
1 cup water

Garnishes: finely chopped green pepper & onions, sliced scallions, croutons, avocado, cooked shrimp, cured ham (Proscuitto, Spanish Serrano), and/or basil oil (see recipe in Sauces).

1. Put 1 cup tomato juice in the blender jar. Add the bread, onions, peppers, tomatoes, cucumber, garlic, cumin, salt, and pepper. Blend until smooth at high speed.

2. Pour into a large bowl and whisk in the oil and vinegar. Add remaining tomato juice and water. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Chill at least 2 hours before serving.

Serve with an assortment of garnishes.

©Julie Logue-Riordan 2009

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Copyright © Julie Logue Riordan, Cooking with Julie