When we get hit with weeks of high summer temperatures like we have been experiencing lately, sometimes Jeff and I just don’t feel like cooking. One of our favorite no-cook meals is a big bowl of fresh chilled gazpacho loaded up with all kinds of good chunky fresh vegetables.
Gazpacho is a Mexican dish, however, my family never really ate it while I was growing up, so we had to search for a good recipe.
Like most Ina Garten dishes, this recipe is simple yet packed with flavor and takes advantage of fresh seasonal ingredients. I did modify Ina’s recipe a bit by cutting the olive oil in half to keep it healthier (an eighth a cup is more than enough), and we substitute chilled white wine for the vinegar. I also toss the garlic in with the vegetables instead of adding it in with the seasonings. Ina’s original recipe claims to yield 4 to 6 servings, but we have always been able to easily get 6 to 8 full bowls of soup out of this version.
The dish tastes best the longer it’s chilled, so we like to make our gazpacho the night before serving. We also pair it with chilled shrimp cocktail for a full well-balanced healthy no-cook busy summer weeknight dinner.
- 1 hothouse cucumber, halved and seeded, but not peeled
- 2 red bell peppers, cored and seeded
- 4 plum tomatoes
- 1 red onion
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 23 ounces tomato juice (3 cups)
- ¼ cup white wine
- ⅛ cup good olive oil
- ½ tablespoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
- Roughly chop the cucumbers, bell peppers, tomatoes, red onions into 1-inch cubes. Put each vegetable and garlic separately into a food processor fitted with a steel blade and pulse until it is coarsely chopped. Do not overprocess!
- After each vegetable is processed, combine them in a large bowl and add the garlic, tomato juice, vinegar, olive oil, salt, and pepper. Mix well and chill before serving. The longer gazpacho sits, the more the flavors develop.