Tomato Gazpacho

We ate this sitting out on the deck with Leonard, overlooking the hills of Saratoga as the sun went down one hot summery night. Of the two gazpacho recipes on my site, this is my favorite. But, it does require excellent tomatoes.

If you can't get excellent fresh tomatoes, then I recommend a different gazpacho recipe. This other recipe can be made in the dead of winter or in the middle of a food desert.

I modified this from a Golden Tomato Gazpacho found on the Robert Mondavi website. It is no longer there...

Serves: 8
Time: 1 hour of work, and an hour to sit. Can be made the day before and assembles easily right before serving.

A. red tomatoes 2 pounds They have to be really good or this recipe won't work.

Bring a large pot of water to a boil.

Prepare a second large pot of cold water with a tray of ice cubes in it.

Drop each tomato into the boiling water for 15 seconds.

Remove the tomatoes from the boiling water and drop them into the ice water.

Their skins will split and should be very easy to remove.

Cut them in half and remove the seeds - this is important, don't leave too many seeds in the soup!

Chop coarsely.

B. yellow bell pepper 1 large  
cucumber 1 large Peeled, seeded.
garlic 2 cloves Peeled.
  red wine vinegar 2 tablespoons  
  extra virgin olive oil 0.25 cup   
  Tabasco sauce 0.5 teaspoon  

Set aside half of the bell pepper and cucumber.

In a blender, purée the tomatoes, half the pepper, half the cucumber, and garlic.

Pass it through a strainer.

Mix in the vinegar, oil, Tabasco.

Place in refrigerator and chill thoroughly. Leaving it overnight allows the flavors to mix well.

C. white onion 0.5 a medium A whole onion is too much.
celery 1 stalk  
tarragon, fresh 1 tablespoon Chopped
  Kosher salt 0.5 teaspoon To taste.
  Remaining vegetables from step B.  

Finely chop the onion, celery, and the remaining pepper and cucumber.

Mix with the tarragon and salt.

When you are ready to serve, spoon the purée into bowls and sprinkle each with the chopped vegetables. You can drizzle a bit more olive oil on it, but be careful that it doesn't become an oily dish.