Heirloom Tomato Gazpacho (THM FP)
I know what you might be thinking, "Soup in the summer? It's way too hot for that mess!" This is not your momma's tomato soup.
Gazpacho is a cold tomato-based soup with raw vegetables. Normally, I do this with all red roma tomatoes, but this time I wanted to show the colors of summer by using multi-colored heirloom tomatoes. I am THE tomato gal, and in the summer time there's nothing more beautiful to me than a rainbow-colored array of fresh tomatoes.
What makes this soup so effortless is that it comes together in your food processor. No extraneous cooking required - just choppity chop, stir, and chill.
Start by peeling and seeding the tomatoes. They will give off a lot of juice, so peel and seed them over a measuring cup or bowl with a fine strainer over top. This way, the seeds will separate and you can keep the juice. Roughly chop the tomatoes after seeding, and add them to a food processor. Pulse until desired consistency, I tend to go for smaller pieces. Press the seeds and any tomato pieces through the sieve to release as much juice as you can. Add enough water to make 1 cup, and add it to a large bowl with the chopped tomatoes.
Peel cucumber and chop into large pieces. Add it to the food processor and pulse until you have small chunks. Add it to a large bowl with the tomatoes.
Follow the same process for the onion, garlic, and bell pepper.
Add the vinegar, EVOO, salt and pepper and adjust seasoning as necessary.
Pop a lid on your bowl and refrigerate for at least 8 hours before serving. If you go overnight the flavor will be even better!
When you're ready to serve, pluck a few large leaves of fresh basil, stack them one on top of the other, roll them up and slice across. This will give you beautiful ribbons of fresh basil. *NOTE: Don't add the basil to the rest of the soup as the vinegar can break it down, only on what you're serving right now.
What's best about this recipe, besides the fact that there's zero cooking involved, is the longer it sits the better it gets. You can prep it on a Monday and eat it on Friday.
Alone, this recipe is a THM FP. To go into S territory, you can add an extra drizzle of EVOO over the top of your soup and have a salad on the side, or a fatty protein of your choice (grilled salmon would be delicious!). To lean towards E, you can have a few pieces of nice crusty sourdough on the side (this was my direction, because this soup NEEDS a hunk of bread for dipping) and a lean protein (grilled chicken with a little lemon juice, perhaps). It's also fantastic stand alone as a light lunch - any way you have it, you can't go wrong with this one.