GAZPACHO: A Refreshing Summer Soup
Gazpacho is a traditional summer soup that finds its origin in southern Spain and is made from fresh and raw produce. This time of year produce is bountiful and fresh. Tomatoes are the basis of this recipe. It is served cold as either an appetizer or a main dish. This Mediterranean recipe is the version of a "pureed" salad of garden vegetables and fruit offering the benefit of fresh, water dense produce that are sure to cool you on a hot summer day. This has the added benefit of being is a low calorie, low fat and low cholesterol food.
Local produce is ideal because it can be harvested closer to it's peak nutrient density. In addition, local produce is not subjected to the stress of handling and travel. Local produce also supports the local economy and allows for a greater community connection between farmer and end user.
About the ingredients:
TOMATOES ~ Tomatoes, the quientessential summer fruit, are rich in Vitamin C, potassium and manganese. Tomatoes also contain the phytonutrient, lycopene, which is recognized for promoting heart health and reducing cancer risk.
GARLIC ~ Garlic is a culinary powerhouse offering medicinal qualities like antioxidant, antiviral, antifungal, antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties.
CUCUMBERS ~ Cucumbers are high in water content and loaded with electrolytes, like potassium. Select a slicing cucumber that is firm but not hard.
To find the best local produce check out the Maryland 2020 Farmer's Market Directory. This is the link: https://marylandsbest.maryland.gov/wp-content/uploads/Maryland-Farmers-Market-Directory-2020.pdf
Serves 4 ~ Yield = 4 cups = 32 oz
3 cloves of garlic
2.2 lbs tomatoes, halved
1 green pepper, seeded, cored and sliced
¾ cucumber, peeled and sliced
5 rounded tsp of finely grated onion
2 handfuls of slightly stale white bread, with crusts removed, roughly crumbled
2 ½ tablespoons of good quality red wine vinegar or sherry vinegar
3 tablespoons of olive oil
sea salt and black pepper
1 hard boiled egg yolk (optional)
1) Crush garlic in a mortar and pestle with a good pinch of salt until you have a smooth paste.
2) Using a blender or food processor, puree all the vegetables and the bread until smooth.
3) Put three-quarters of the mixture through a sieve, to give a finer texture.
4) Finish by seasoning the soup with the garlic, vinegar, oil, salt and black pepper.
5) If you want a thinner or lighter soup add four ice cubes. (For a creamier version, also blend in hard-boiled egg yolk.)
6) Put in the fridge for 2 hours to cool. It is always advisable to check the balance of the vinegar and seasoning once the soup is cold.
Clark, S. & Clark, S. (2001). Moro: The cookbook. London, Ebury Publishing.
Labensky, S. R., Hause, A. M., & Martel, P. (2015). On cooking: A textbook of culinary fundamentals. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson.
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