Early this week, I checked on our tomatoes. There, tucked away close to the center of the monstrous plants, was quite a bounty. Twelve pounds of tomatoes, to be exact. And they were quite ripe- a thing to behold and not to mess around with, as twelve pounds of rotten tomatoes is something to be ashamed of around here. And frankly, I am sick and tired of the old caprese salad stand-by.
Also, it has been crazy hot here all of a sudden, so tomato sauce has not been on my mind. Standing over a huge steaming pot of sauce in the kitchen in 100-degree weather is not happening. No, sir. But gazpacho, now that’s happening.
I messed with this recipe for two hours until I felt that I got it just right. Hope you enjoy!
Late Summer Harvest Gazpacho
- 7 lbs ripe tomatoes, peeled and roughly chopped
- 5 English cucumbers, peeled and diced
- 1 summer squash, diced
- 1 small zucchini, diced
- 1/2 vidalia onion
- 1 red pepper, de-seeded and diced
- 1 orange pepper, de-seeded and diced
- 6 cloves garlic (or more!), minced finely
- 1 cup tomato juice
- 1/2 cup red wine vinegar
- 1 tsp hot sauce
- salt, to taste (don’t be stingy- the salt brings out all the flavor in the tomatoes!)
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
After chopping all the veggies, separate them into two bowls. Blend half the veggies in a food processor just for a few seconds. You may have to do this in shifts- don’t overfill your machine! Once half the veggies are processed, add them, in a large bowl, to the chopped veggies. Pour the vinegar, tomato juice, and hot sauce in, and season with salt. drizzle in the olive oil, and stir well. Refrigerate several hours before eating- allowing it to sit will help the flavors come out.
Serve with homemade *toasted bread crumbs or croutons and a dollop of sour cream. Enjoy!
*To make homemade toasted bread crumbs, toast four slices whole wheat bread, then grind them up in the food processor, mix in a bowl with a couple tablespoons olive oil, and spread out on a baking sheet: bake in 400-degree oven for 5 minutes, or until light brown and crunchy.