Thursday, June 30, 2011

Simple Gazpacho with Shrimp

It does not get any more simple, pure and healthy than this delicious veggie soup which is served cold. The veggies are raw, so you do not lose any of the nutrients in the cooking process, which makes this soup extra healthy. 

With heat warnings ahead, 16 hours of exam practice in two days--I know cooking will not be on my priority list.  If you can chop veggies, you can make this soup.  It helps if you have a food processor, but a blender will do the trick too.  Some or the reviewers actually said they roughly chopped the vegetables by hand for an extra chunky soup, so do not shy away from this recipe for lack of tools.  There are many gazpacho variations--I picked a more basic version from Ina Garten

Veggies before they hit the steel blades of the food processor. 

5 Roma tomatoes, cut into one inch chunks
1 English cucumber, cut in half and seeded
2 red bell peppers, cut into one inch chunks
1 red onion, cut into one inch chunks
3 garlic cloves, minced
3 cups of tomato juice (I use the Sacramento brand)
1/4 cup EVOO
1/4 cup white wine vinegar
1/2 Tbs kosher salt
ground black pepper

Optional Garnishments
Greek yogurt (use it like sour cream)
small shrimp (I like to throw a few on top before I eat it)

1) Chop up all of your veggies.  In a food processor, take each vegetable separately and pulse until it is coarsely chopped.  It is important you do the veggies separately, because of the different textures.  You can look at the pictures below to see what "coarsely chopped" looks like.  Also--this is a matter of preference.  You may want a really chunky soup or even a puree.

2) After each veggies has been through the food processor, set it aside in a large bowl (at least 3L).  When all of the veggies are done, add the vinegar, EVOO, tomato juice, salt & pepper.  Place it in the fridge and allow it to chill.  The longer it sits, the better it will taste!

3) If you want, garnish it with a dollop of Greek yogurt and half a dozen small shrimp. 

*One of the reviewers suggested serving it in champagne flutes garnished with sour cream.  Might be a cute idea for a gathering...

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