Garden Fresh Summery Gazpacho. Earthy plump juicy tomatoes are the star of this delightful ultra fresh chilled soup that takes the heat off.
My first time with gazpacho I was moonlighting, waitering a catered wedding during a particularly steamy July weekend in New Jersey. I think we all agreed that even in the air conditioned banquet hall the slightest movement was making our uniforms stick to us. What’s a person to do?
One of the offerings during cocktail hour were shots of gazpacho. At first glance they looked like Bloody Mary shooters. Chef’s gazpacho was so delicious and refreshing. As word spread among the crowd, guests were opting for chef’s garden fresh summery gazpacho. The ever popular fried mushrooms and mini quiche were doomed. They say “you snooze, you lose”; and guests that missed out on gazpacho during cocktail hour were requesting to have it as a first course. Many became a little ornery when told they could not have it because we ran out. “86” as they say in the restaurant biz.
Chef was very humble over the praise heaped on him for his delicious appetizer but said he didn’t “make” the tomatoes. And besides he said, “this soup is so simple it practically makes itself” He emphasized the importance tomato freshness and ripeness contributes to the final outcome. I’ll pass on his secret to you all. If you cannot put your hands on farmer market fresh tomatoes don’t bother making this dish. Seems a harsh statement but it is true. Chef’s original recipe calls for a straining of the soup before chilling. I choose to forgo that step to keep the fiber – AND, its one less step!
Get yourselves to a farmers market near you and whip up a batch. You won’t be disappointed. Nosh.