ImageI love summer.

Of course I love it because of the amazing weather, lack of school and proximity of the beach, but more importantly I love it because my garden is in full bloom! Bright red tomatoes, cucumbers sprouting like baby rabbits, lush beds of kale, ahhh its wonderful.  My sister makes fun of me when I spend many a day hussing over the peppers and weeding the lettuce beds.  Whenever I don the wide brimmed hat and crocs she pushes, “going to your zen garden…again,” and you wanna know what, I am.

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Quitting ballet has been one of the hardest things I have ever done.  Although it was necessary and I am happy with my decision I feel an emptiness inside, and believe it or not gardening fills it.  I feel in sync with my emotions when I’m in the garden.  It gives me time to think, but not think like, ‘what am I gonna do today’ or ‘whats going on with my friends, what am I gonna cook next, why is my dog howling’ but really analyze random ideas that pop into my head.  You know what I wish I could’ve taken the SATs in a garden, I probably would’ve done much better.

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But anyways, enough ranting lets get cracking on this delicious summertime soup called gazpacho. Gazpacho, also know as gaspacho, is a spanish based soup and is served cold.  The freshness of the ingredients really make or break it since nothing is cooked, simply vegetables blended with other spices.  Which makes it perfect for the summer as I got a whole garden full of fresh veggies waiting for their deliciousness to be discovered in a cold pot of wonders.

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This is ridiculously easy to make.  You got a food processor, then you have gazpacho. You don’t have a food processor, use a blender.  You don’t have a blender…go get one.

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Here we go!!!!

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 pounds of ripe tomatoes*
  • 1 cucumber, peeled and chopped
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 pepper, chopped**
  • 1 jalapeno or other spicy pepper
  • 2 glubs of extra virgin olive oil (about 1/4 a cup)
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • 2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • fresh basil leaves, for topping

Directions

  1. Comine all ingredients except for the olive oil and basil leaves in a food processor, process until smooth
  2. Slowly add the olive oil while processing
  3. Transfer to a bowl and top with a lime wedge and fresh basil leaves

Notes

  • *Some recipes say to peel and remove the seeds from the tomatoes but I think that too much work for a similar outcome, so I just throw them in, seeds and all
  • ** You can use any type of pepper you like.  I used banana peppers because my neighbor grows them in his garden and so kindly allows me to take some now and again.  But really any type of pepper, bell peppers, green, red, orange, pink, will work in this recipe. The fresher the better.
  • This recipe was derived from Alton Brown’s Gazpacho recipe.  Alton Brown is one of my idols.  He really knows what he is talking about when it comes to food and food preparation. If your ever looking up a recipe on the internet and see that he has one, use it. You won’t be disappointed.

So now it’s your turn. You may already have a garden, or you may not even have access to anything resembling a garden, but either way do your best to grow some of your own food.  It supplies you with healthy options and is extremely cost effective. And maybe you will find that you love it just as much as I do, or even more!

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Happy Gardening!

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