Monday, July 17, 2017

Summer soup: Hallie's gazpacho "to taste"

HALLIE EPHRON: This week is a free for all on Jungle Reds... we're each taking a day.


I'm just coming down from 6 weeks of book events and kicking back and relaxing at home. 

Summer is time for barbecue, pie (sour cherry, raspberry rhubarb, peach...), AND cold soups. My favorite cold summer soup is gazpacho, and I'm having some right now, even though it's 65 degrees here and rainy.

Such a simple recipe, and there aren't really set amounts so you have to taste until it's right for you.

You need a food processor to grind the vegetables with vegetable juice, then add vinegar and hot sauce and salt to taste. I topped mine with Edith Maxwell's chives (thanks, Edith!) So delicious!

Hallie's summer gazpacho


Put these ingredients in a food processor:
- 1/2 of a large cucumber, peeled and cut into chunks
- 1 medium-sized tomato or several smaller ones, cut into chunks
- 1 small or 1/2 large onion, peeled and cut into chunks (I like to use Vidalia for this)
- 1/2 green pepper, seeded and chopped
- 1 cup of canned vegetable juice (like V8) or tomato juice


Blend until there are no more big chunks.

Dump into a bowl.
TASTE!
Add more juice and vinegar (I like to use cider vinegar) until it's the texture and taste you like.
Add hot sauce (I use Siracha) to taste.
Add salt to taste.



Serve...
just as it is, or mix in coarsely chopped vegetables, or top with garlic croutons or chopped chives.)

OR...make it into a seafood and avocado cocktail:
assemble a bowl of cooked  shrimp, scallops, and/or whatever cold cooked fish and shellfish you like. Add plenty of chopped avocado, douse it with gazpacho, top with fresh chopped cilantro, and serve with crusty bread. Dinner!

So what's your go-to summer soup?

64 comments:

  1. This soup, with all the fresh vegetables, sounds delicious, Hallie.
    One of our favorite soups, winter or summer, is split pea soup.

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  2. That sounds delicious, and I'm so glad that chives are working out for you. (Backstory: Hallie had mentioned online that she couldn't find a chive plant for her garden. I divided mine and brought it to her in a pot at her book event in Topsfield.)

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    1. I have enough chives in my garden to divide and share with the free world. I love them for their blooms and hardiness through our winters up on the tundra. However, I have to confess I never use them in anything. Other than on a baked potato with sour cream. Which I haven't had since 1976. So tell me Edith, besides the gazpacho, which I might make later this weeks, what do I do with all these chives?

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    2. Funny - I rarely use them, either!. But they add a nice bit of bite to baked potatoes, or sprinkled on all kinds of things.

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    3. I also never use my chives. I just never think to do so.

      When my girls were little, I taught them what they could eat in the garden, and what was edible in our (untreated) yard. They learned about clover, dandelions, honeysuckle, and edible pod peas, borage, strawberries, and other stuff.

      When the youngest was about three, and very sweet and love, she came up to me as if she wanted a kiss. Then blew her chive-scented breath in my face. The squirt.

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  3. I forgot to mention my other summer soup besides gazpacho - cucumber-buttermilk-dill soup. SO refreshing.

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    1. Yes, please, Edith. I have buttermilk and cucumbers I need to use! No fresh dill, though:-(

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    2. I can't find my recipe, but here's one that comes close: http://www.finecooking.com/recipe/chilled-cucumber-buttermilk-soup
      And another, but personally I would leave out the scallions: http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/cucumber-dill-soup-with-scallions-352429

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  4. Beware, Hallie: Now you will have chives everywhere, unless you deadhead religiously. The chipmunks love the seeds, though, and so do the squirrels.

    What? No garlic in the gazpacho? Sounds wonderful, regardless.

    Summer here is so intense, with all the gardening, processing, and canning, that I rarely also make soup. Steve doesn't care for gazpacho, more's the pity, so I order it out if I want some. But as soon as fall hits, soup it is.

    There used to be a wonderful restaurant across the river in Kentucky, called Coach & Four. One summer I had the most delicious cold strawberry soup there.

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    1. I have a recipe for cold strawberry soup that I haven't tried, seems such a waste of strawberries that I could be eating with shortcake

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    2. Which brings us to shortcake...and exactly what is the right ratio of cake to beerries.

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    3. Maybe 3:1, berries to shortcakes, the Bisquick variety of course. If you have a box of Bisquick in the cupboard, you will never starve. All I use it for is shortcakes and dumplings but it hasn't failed me yet

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    4. Bisquick! My go-to mix. Two nights ago I made a deep dish peach pie with bisquick shortcakes on top.

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    5. And the store brand isn't as good. Some things are not to be messed with.

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    6. I tend to skip the Bisquick and just put the strawberries on top of a slice of my lemon pound cake. The real question is the ratio of whipped cream to pound cake.

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    7. There is absolutely no question that the Bisquick shortcake is vastly superior than any other kind. Although lemon pound cake would be an acceptable alternative, Gigi!

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  5. Oh, that shrimp and avocado and get spot show sounds fantastic! (Ooh--I dictated gazpacho and got "get spot show." ).
    Whenever I make soup, it turns out that I make enough for 27 people. I've got to watch my portions…
    But yes, garlic. Interesting. Is there usually garlic in dispatcher ? ( oops, dictation got gazoacho wrong again :-)

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    1. haha, dictation really doesn't like that word! We like a corn, sausage, and potato soup, and also cold potato soup...yummmy!

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    2. Hank, freeze that extra soup. I just pulled some out of the freezer yesterday. Just be sure to label it. Unknown freezer items never get eaten.

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    3. Yes--what a joy to find something like that! And you are SO right about labelling!

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    4. I dunno. Sometimes I do what I call freezer diving. If it's in there, I thought I'd want to eat it at some time in the past, so when I'm stuck for something to fix for dinner and I'm feeling adventurous, I'll pull out the un-labeled stuff and live dangerously.

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    5. Gigi, I did that once when Steve and I were first married. We ended up having mountain goat stew, from a hunting trip he'd taken to Alaska.

      I don't recommend it. The goat tasted like goats smell.

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  6. Edith: recipe?!?!
    Karen: It doesn't need garlic, and fresh garlic can overpower... and linger. I love it, but not all of my eaters do.
    Cold strawberry soup. Appetizer or desert? Creamy or fruity

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    1. It was a salad course. So refreshing.

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    2. I put in a couple of links above - can't find my recipe, which means I must wing it every time.

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    3. Yes, I am SO happy without garlic in things...xoox

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  7. Karen: chives everywhere! Hopefully they'll shoulder my running-wild oregano aside...

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    1. I wish my oregano would run somewhere.

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    2. Oregano is a wild weed in our neighborhood, finally got it out of the flower beds and I can grab a handful from someone else when I need it.

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    3. Right. Oregano is invasive. Mine jumped the pot and I've got it corralled in a corner of our stone patio.

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    4. My weed is lemon balm!!! I have to pull it up everywhere!

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    5. Mine is horseradish, of all things. I planted it in the garden, and it showed up clear on the other side of the house, which is thirty yards from the garden.

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  8. Get spot show... See Hank run...

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  9. Lucy, corn and potato in any soup and I'm sold. I have a recipe waiting on my counter for a creamy cold potato leek soup (Vichyssoise: Imagine what Dictation would do with that!)

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    1. Vichyssoise is the food of the gods. I can't convince Julie to eat cold potato soup tho. I make a cold corn salad, fresh corn uncooked, scallions, chopped peppers of whatever color is in the fridge, cherry tomatoes, and about a cup of fava beans from Wegman's Olive bar along with the oil they come in. Frabjous

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  10. Looks great, Hallie. I'm trying that this week.

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  11. I have to admit, I'm not a summer soup person. Never really got into cold soups.

    Mary/Liz

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    Replies
    1. Glad to see someone else admit it. Same here.

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    2. I'm on your team, Mary and Jim.

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  12. OH yummy! One of my favorites! I love cold soups. I have a brilliantly easy cream of shrimp soup I used to serve when I used to give dinner parties.

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  13. I used to have a cold cauliflower leek soup recipe that was fabulous, years ago. Hmm. Time to do a Google search...

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  14. I'm with Mary Sutton - all the recipes sound wonderful, if they were only hot. I can't seem to get past the chilliness of cold soup, and making hot soup is not something I want to do in the summer. (Although I'll have clam or haddock chowder or lobster bisque if I'm eating out.)

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  15. Greatest cold soup ever: Avocado-Buttermilk Soup with Crab Salad! You all know we well enough by now to know that if it isn't easy to make, it's not happening! This is an old "Cooking Light" recipe, and it's awesome and easy.

    http://www.myrecipes.com/recipe/avocado-buttermilk-soup-with-crab-salad


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    1. Tomatillos! That surprised me. Sounds delicious. I wonder how it would be if you left out the orange rind.

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    2. It would still be tasty. Don't let that stop you!

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  16. This is an inspiration, Hallie, as are some of the other suggestions. I also love a cold buttermilk borscht in the summer, with cukes and dill to compliment the beets. I don't have the proportions on hand, but there are recipes all over the 'net. It is yummy-plus!

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  17. I have to say I'm one of those who don't care for cold soups. Of course, I'm open to being converted. I do love hot soups when a chill begins to come into the air, with potato soup and vegetable soup being my favorites.

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  18. I love Gazpacho any time of year. I don't have a food processor, so I wonder if I could try this in my VitaMix?

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    1. It's basically a smoothie, so why not!

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  19. Sorry to everyone here who likes making soup, but my tastes for soup never advanced past a can of Campbell's Chicken Noodle.

    When a cousin of mine got married, the first "food" item that came out at the reception was this bowl of pink liquid. (At the time, bride and groom were, horror of horrors, vegetarians). I looked at it and said, "Is the food that bad that they gave us a bowl of Pepto Bismol in advance?"

    Turns out it was strawberry soup. But it just looked so gawdawful unappetizing that I didn't dare try it. Plus, I'm a soup should be hot guy anyway.

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    1. I sometimes have a hard time engaging with pea soup for the same reason.

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    2. Cold spring pea soup with cream is divine.

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    3. It was. Whenever I visit my Boulder daughter we go out for as many restaurant meals as we can, there are so many good places to go. All the food, naturally, is local and organic. It doesn't do to get too attached to any of them, though, because by the time I get back there is some other establishment in that spot.

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  20. I had gazpacho in Spain years ago. I liked it. I've made it just once. Someone I am married to is opposed to cold soups of any kind. Stick in the mud. We've not heard from Julia in ages. Is she in her writing cave?

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  21. I'm standing with Hallie. Gazpacho is my go to summer soup. My recipe comes from the first South Beach Diet book but is essentially the same as Hallie's. Think I'll make some this weekend. I used to have a recipe for cucumber soup that I loved, can't find it anywhere, and the ones I find online don't seem right. Have to keep looking.

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    Replies
    1. Cucumber and... buttermilk? yogurt? dill?

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  22. That looks amazing! I love gazpacho. It's the only cold soup I enjoy but it's also the only one I've tried.

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  23. I just remembered another amazing cold soup, one I had in Austria last summer. It was asparagus season, and I ordered a whole meal of dishes featuring asparagus, including a cold soup and a hot soup. One used green, and the other white asparagus. Easy one was time, about two ounces, but I sipped them very slowly, alternating, unable to decide which was more delicious.

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  24. Gazpacho is the best in the summer- refreshing on a hot day, delicious and healthy too.I still use the recipe (much tinkered with) I got form the firs person I knew who made it. And I was a teen then!I make a few other cold soups too, but the other big favorite here is almost as old, clipped from a magazine when I was a newly wed. Peeled, sliced cucumbers cooked in broth. Add lemon juice and fresh pepper. Puree and chill. Whisk in sour cream. Perfect. And looks elegant with a dab of sour cream and a cucumber slice floating on top.

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