This is the competition entry for this months No Croutons Required hosted by Jacqueline of Tinned Tomatoes. The first time we entered back in Febuary we joint-won the event, but then last month didn’t even get a placing. Lets’ hope we do better this month. Please follow the links above and come vote for us!!
When I used to work for Manna restaurant in London this was always one of the favourites there. Then I was looking through Millennium Cookbook from the guys in San Francisco and they say it was one of their most popular soups too. Maybe we always just pushed it as it was such an easy thing to knock up if we were busy!
I mention this as I have to admit I am a little surprised. Maybe, it’s just me, coming from a cold country where soup was there for warming and comforting you, but a not just cold, but actively chilled soup with a bit of a zingy acid-edge from the tomatoes was never what I have been looking for in a soup.
But tastes change, or maybe it’s because I’m here I have just learned to appreciate this soup for what it is. Indeed, it is also true, that given a hot Spanish afternoon it is a good way to refresh the pallet and cool down at the beginning of a leisurely meal.
Gazpacho (serves 4 as an appetizer)
4 ripe large tomatoes
2 slices stale bread
½ red pepper
1 stick of celery
1 large tbs tomato paste
2 tbs Sherry Vinegar (or Apple Cider)
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp oregano
1 cup stock or water
1 tsp salt, pepper
5 tbs good quality Olive Oil
1. Soak the stale bread in water for 20 mins, then squeeze out as much water as you can and set aside.
2. Cut a cross at the bottom of each tomato. Bring a pan of water to the boil and drop them in for 1 minute. Re-fresh and cool water and peel the skins of. Core and seed.
3. Peel the cucumber and place the rest of the ingredients, except the stock, Oil and Salt in a food processor. Blend until smooth.
4. Taste and add salt. Add stock or more water to get to your desired consistency.
5. Blend in 3 tbs of the Olive Oil. Garnish with the remaining 2 tbs and the 1 Ice Cube for each bowl.