Gazpacho with Herbed Goat Cheese Toasts

 

 

I like to think of gazpacho as a chilled beverage/soup served in a glass to hydrate in the hot weather months, in the spirit of Seville, Spain, where I visited several summers ago. David Lebovitz said he liked to think of it as an icy-cold liquid salad. What do you think of it?

This David Lebovitz’s gazpacho recipe calls for three pounds of ripe tomatoes. When I started making the gazpacho, found out I only had two pounds on hand, so I adapted the recipe loosely. That’s the fun and joy in the making. A little of this, a little of that, everything came together beautifully and deliciously. No strain and no stress.


The key players are ripe tomatoes and olive oil. The rest is roughly: one slice of bread, one cucumber, one red onion, one bell pepper, two garlic cloves, about one tablespoon of red wine vinegar, half a teaspoon of smoked paprika or chili powder, and salt and pepper. All peeled, seeded and cut into pieces. I skipped the vodka, since I don’t have any. Everything went into the high-power Vitamix and blend until smooth. I drizzled in the olive oil in a steady stream while the blender was running, until the gazpacho turned bright orange and emulsified.

Taking the skins off the tomatoes took a bit of time, compared to the otherwise high-speed operation with the Vitamix. That involves plunging the tomatoes into the boiling water and blanching them for 30 seconds, or until the skins loosen. Rinse under cold water. Then peel off the skins. I used a box grater to mesh the peeled tomatoes over a large bowl. Discarded tough parts of the core and some seeds. (I may skip this step next time in the interest and benefit of whole juicing.) The rest all went into the blender. No sweating of the small details.

September is here, picking in the herb garden has turned slimmer. I cut some basil and parsley. Chopped them up and mixed in with the goat cheese. Drizzled in some olive oil and seasoning. Smeared the herbed cheese spread on the toasted bread. Served it with the gazpacho. It’s a light meal, brimming with the orange glow of tomatoes in the sun, still lingering, at the close of the summer season….

Gazing skyward, here in East Asia last evening, where I am passing by at the moment, the warm glow came from the bright full moon, in the midst of the mid-autumn festival. Looking onto the streets and living rooms, traditional handmade lanterns framed by paper and rattan, and lit with candles (or with LED lights in contemporary versions), were casting a festive glow while families gathered for dinner celebrations, savoring the customary moon cakes as desserts.

 

Please visit Cook-the-book-fridays to see more comments on this recipe from the online group, a community of engaging home cooks, who are working through David Lebovitz’s My Paris Kitchen.

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16 Comments

  • Reply
    Natascha Beutner
    September 16, 2016 at 6:30 pm

    Yours looks awesome! Just like the ones I see in the restaurants here in Spain! Great job!

  • Reply
    Natascha Beutner
    September 16, 2016 at 6:30 pm

    Yours looks awesome! Just like the ones I see in the restaurants here in Spain! Great job!

  • Reply
    Nana
    September 16, 2016 at 7:58 pm

    That soup looks so delicious. Mine was pretty chunky with the added vegetables, but tasty all the same.

  • Reply
    flour.ish.en
    September 16, 2016 at 8:57 pm

    I have such fond memories of the incredible food scene in Spain. Thanks for your remarks.

  • Reply
    Nicole
    September 17, 2016 at 2:57 pm

    I love hearing about how all of us, in different places in the world, can enjoy these dishes together. Your scene sounds so picturesque!

  • Reply
    Nicole
    September 17, 2016 at 2:57 pm

    I love hearing about how all of us, in different places in the world, can enjoy these dishes together. Your scene sounds so picturesque!

  • Reply
    Mardi Michels
    September 17, 2016 at 8:40 pm

    This looks lovely! And love the lantern photo!

  • Reply
    Teresa
    September 19, 2016 at 6:55 am

    Gorgeous photos! How nice to enjoy this soup before partaking in the mid-autumn festival – love the gorgeous lanterns in your third photo. I missed out on moon cakes this year and had to feast on all the beautiful photos people posted of them, instead.

  • Reply
    kitchen flavours
    September 19, 2016 at 2:35 pm

    Your gazpacho looks lovely! Mine was a little too thick for my liking, I should have pureed it very well instead of leaving some chunky pieces. But then this is the first time I've made and tried tomato gazpacho!

  • Reply
    Mary Hirsch
    September 19, 2016 at 9:06 pm

    Your last photo is magical. Thank you for sharing it. And, thank you for your kind words when commenting on my post. I plan to be back posting in early November so we'll see how it goes. Yes, this gazpacho was more salad than soup but I liked it. Perhaps it would be a little soupier if I didn't add the chunk of bread. I have lots of gazpacho recipes that I make and I intend to include this in my batch. Yours looks beautiful. Love how you served it.

  • Reply
    Karen @ From Scratch
    September 19, 2016 at 11:20 pm

    I enjoyed the chunky version of this soup, but I have to say yours looks fabulous!

  • Reply
    lisa brown
    September 20, 2016 at 9:28 am

    Yours looks so creamy and beautiful- perfect presentation. The lanterns are so pretty, thank you for sharing

  • Reply
    lisa brown
    September 20, 2016 at 9:28 am

    Yours looks so creamy and beautiful- perfect presentation. The lanterns are so pretty, thank you for sharing

  • Reply
    EmilyC
    September 22, 2016 at 11:37 am

    Which part of East Asia are you? Love the picture of the lanterns! Love the smoothness of your blended tomatoes. Wonderful pictures!

  • Reply
    EmilyC
    September 22, 2016 at 11:38 am

    Which part of East Asia are you? Love the picture of the lanterns! Love the smoothness of your blended tomatoes. Wonderful pictures!

  • Reply
    Betsy
    October 4, 2016 at 1:40 am

    I think of gazpacho as salad in a bowl. Yours is so perfectly smooth. My blender didn't do quite the same job as your Vitamix. Love the lantern picture. It's gorgeous.

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