Refreshing Gazpacho Soup

I will admit, I am not a natural cook (a baker, yes, but not a cook).  It really wasn’t until I went vegan that I began gaining an interest in experimenting with new recipes.  Creating healthy, colorful, plant-based foods is something I can get excited about.  And so, I will begin sharing some of my favorite recipes that I have found and tried or have slightly adapted myself.  

Because it is the dead of summer and it’s been super hot, I have no interest in cooking anything over a hot stove.  So for me, it’s mostly about smoothies, salads and cold soups in the summertime.  And making the most of all the fresh produce!

Ripe tomatoes and fresh basil are key ingredients in gazpacho

Gazpacho is a cold tomato-based soup chock full of veggies and spices, and it’s something I remember enjoying as a child.  My mother absolutely loved serving us this, made from the tomatoes that she had growing in her garden.  Unfortunately, I never got her recipe before she passed away.  So I searched online for a recipe that most resembled my mother’s gazpacho.

Please check out this wonderfully savory and refreshing cold soup recipe – slightly adapted from Chef John’s Gazpacho found on allrecipes.com.

Prep 45 min – 1 hour
Serves 6

Ingredients:

4 large fresh tomatoes (or 6 medium tomatoes) – peeled and diced
1/2 cup red bell pepper – finely diced
1/4 cup scallion – minced
1/2 cup celery – finely diced
1/2 English cucumber – peeled and finely diced
1 large jalapeno pepper – seeded and minced
2 cloves garlic – minced
1 teaspoon salt (I use Maldon sea salt)
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1 pinch dried oregano
1 pinch cayenne pepper 
fresh ground black pepper – to taste
1 pint cherry tomatoes
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 lime – juiced
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
thinly sliced fresh basil (to garnish soup)

Directions:

  • Combine diced tomatoes, bell pepper, scallion, celery, cucumber, jalapeno, and garlic in a large bowl. Stir in salt, cumin, oregano, cayenne pepper, and black pepper. 
  • Place cherry tomatoes, olive oil, lime juice, and balsamic vinegar in a blender. Cover and puree until smooth. Pour pureed mixture through a strainer into the tomato-cucumber mixture; stir to combine. 
  • Place 1/3 of the tomato mixture into the blender. Cover, turn blender on, and puree until smooth. Return pureed mixture to the remaining tomato-cucumber mixture. Stir to combine.
  • Cover and chill in refrigerator for 2 hours. 

After two hours (or more) in the refrigerator, serve cold soup, topped with fresh basil.

Healthy, easy and a crowd pleaser

Great served with some French bread and chopped avocado.

Enjoy! 🙂

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