I don't want to repeat a lot of recipes on my site, but I do love gazpacho. When Cooks Illustrated offered one I had to try it. I made it one Saturday and left it to the fridge over night. The next day I took it to Stern Grove for the Natalie MacMaster show. (GREAT show.) While I think the other fresh tomato recipe is better, this one got such rave reviews I had to put it out too. (Thanks for the compliments Sarah!)
A few things to note. Good tomatoes are key. If they're all green and hard it won't be as good - duh. However, this recipe can get by with less perfect tomatoes. That's because it gets a boost from good tomato juice. Cooks had a whole discussion and thought Welch's was the top dog. My store didn't have it so I used Campbell's and the people loved it. Lastly, the key to a great presentation is having all the vegetables diced to about the same size. You don't want the tomatoes to be big and the cucumbers tiny. I amped up the garlic, because I'm a garlic hound.
Time: 1 hour working plus an 4 hour rest.
|A.||good red tomatoes||1.5 pounds|
|red bell peppers||1 pound|
|white onion||0.5 medium||A whole onion is too much.|
|red wine vinegar||0.3 cup|
|balsamic wine vinegar||2 tablespoons|
|fresh ground black pepper||0.25 teaspoon|
Cut tomatoes in half and remove the seeds.
Peel the cucumber and remove seeds.
Remove the seeds and stem from the pepper.
Dice the tomatoes, cucumber, pepper, and onion into 1/4 inch cubes. Uniform size makes a big difference in this soup.
Mince the garlic very finely.
Combine tomatoes, bell pepper, cucumber, onion, garlic, salt, pepper, and vinegars.
Let stand for 5 minutes.
|B.||tomato juice||5 cups||I used Campbell's, Cooks recommends Welch's|
|Tabasco sauce||1 teaspoon|
|Habanero sauce||1/8 teaspoon|
Mix in tomato juice and hot sauces (careful with that Habanero sauce, a little goes a looooong way).
Cover tightly and store in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours.
|C.||extra virgin olive oil||0.25 cup|
When ready to serve, remove one cup of the mixed vegetables.
Use a handheld food processor or blender to purée the rest. I have also served it without this step and while it is good, the purée is a big step better.
Spoon into bowls, add a spoonful of the reserved chopped veggies and drizzle a little olive oil in each bowl. Or mix it all together now and put it into a thermos bottle for your picnic.