I can’t believe it’s been almost a month since I participated in Barefoot! We were on vacation last round and I just didn’t think Curried Couscous would be the best snack for the car ride.
This week’s recipe was chosen by Meryl of My Bit of Earth. At first, I was less than thrilled about the recipe choice because I’d never tried gazpacho and never really had any desire to try gazpacho. Knowing I was going to miss the first recipe of this month, I was scheming with ways to avoid making gazpacho. Alas, life has a funny way of slapping you.
While on vacation, The Mother-In-Law made one of her favorite dishes for dinner one night… gazpacho! As I stood in the kitchen roughly chopping bell peppers, cucumbers and onions I thought, ‘this can’t be that bad, it’s filled with veggies that I love!’ The biggest hurdles would be the texture and temperature of the soup, I knew this. I should not have wasted my energy on fear. The soup was amazing. Fresh, tasty, filling, slightly spicy and amazingly wonderful.
I made slight adjustments to Ina’s recipe to reflect what I saw The Mother-In-Law’s use in her perfection of gazpacho. I hope you enjoy!
Adapted by Ina Garten, The Barefoot Contessa
1 hothouse cucumber, halved and seeded (too lazy to seed it)
2 bell peppers, cored & seeded (I used green)
2- 14.5 oz cans diced tomatoes
1 bunch scallions
3 cloves garlic
1/4 c red wine vinegar
1/4 c olive oil
Salt & Pepper to taste
2 T mayonnaise*
Dash of Tabasco
Roughly chop all veggies and place in a large bowl. Top the veggies with the diced tomatoes (with juice), vinegar, mayonnaise and olive oil. Using and immersion blender, blend until smooth.
The Mother-In-Law started by chopping everything in the food processor then smoothed everything with the immersion blender and it worked like a charm. I decided to give it a whirl and skipped the food processor all together. The immersion blender was fantastic! I know Ina said to not over process the vegetables, but knowing that I was going to have an issue with the texture, I went ahead and smoothed it all out against her italicized wishes.
Season with salt and pepper to taste, add a few dashes of Tabasco and you’re golden. I prepared the soup before Martial Arts on Monday and threw the bowl in the freezer while we went to kick some bums… it was perfectly cold when we got home. We served this The Mother-In-Law style with French bread. I searched for Camembert cheese, but the best I could come up with was Laughing Cow.
*The Mother-In-Law adds 2 T mayonnaise to her gazpacho. Normally, I would gag at the thought, but she did it before I could have a reaction to it. In all honesty, it was amazing. I’m sure the mayonnaise acts as an acid neutralizer for the tomatoes but it also adds a nice creamy consistency to the soup. Try it next time!
By the way… it ain’t pretty. Just sayin.