Gazpacho To Beat the Heat

Temperatures in Chicago are through the roof. I’m not complaining, don’t get me wrong, it’s lovely to finally be able to put away winter coats and bare our arms, but when the heat is in the 90s, my appetite and desire to cook disappears. Just the thought of turning on the oven makes me sweat.

On these sultry summer nights, I crave freshness. Ripe red tomatoes, crispy green cucumbers, and creamy avocado. All those flavors come together beautifully in a cold gazpacho soup. It comes together in less than five minutes with the help of a blender and topped with a few grilled shrimp, makes the perfect summer dinner.

Summer Gazpacho
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 0 minutes
Serves: 4
5 ripe and sweet tomatoes, coarsely chopped
1 or 2 cucumbers, peeled and coarsely chopped
1/2 a Vidalia onion, coarsely chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
1/2 cup of bread crumbs
1/4 cups of olive oil
optional, but really lovely, 4 tablespoons of sherry
1/2 teaspoon of aroyo chili powder (optional as well, but gives a lovely smoky heat)

  1. Chop the tomatoes, cucumbers, garlic, and onion and puree in a blender or food processor.
  2. Pour into a serving bowl. Fold in the breadcrumbs. Drizzle with olive oil and sherry. Season with salt, pepper, and chili powder.
  3. Serve at room temperature or after chilling in the fridge for 30 minutes.
  4. I served this with a few shrimp that I sauteed very briefly at very high heat on the stove and then drizzled with lemon. Chunks of avocado would have been another delicious addition had I had them in the house.

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