Time for Tapas: Spanish-style gazpacho soup

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Chilled gazpacho is a perfect summer soup, full of Andalusian flavours. A classic gazpacho tends to include bread, we’ve gone gluten-free in our recipe and upped the tomatoes. We liken it to a savoury salsa smoothie – it’s a totally tantalising tapas dish, wonderfully healthy, light, refreshing and dead delicious on a hot summers day.

Be sure to make it in advance as it’s best left to chill for two hours.

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Serves:          4 as a light lunch, 8 as a small appetizer in a glass

Prep time:     10 minutes

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ingredients

  • 1kg (2Ib) ripe tomatoes,
  • ¼ large cucumber, peeled and seeded
  • 1 medium bell pepper, cored and seeded
  • ½ Spanish onion, or a small white onion, peeled and cut into rough chunks
  • 1 large garlic clove, peeled
  • small handful of fresh basil leaves, plus a sprig for garnsih
  • 3tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2tbsp sherry vinegar
  • ¼ tsp ground cumin
  • ¼ tsp  dry oregano
  • ¼ tsp cayenne pepper
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Method

 

  1. First set up a few bowls, one medium for serving, one small, a small cup and your blender bowl. Halve the tomatoes, scoop out the seeds and roughly chop into 2cm chunks. Reserve some of the juicy seeds in a cup, these will be used for garnishing later. Add half the tomatoes to the blender, and the other half to the medium bowl. Add all the onion chunks to the blender.
  2. Cut off a 2cm chunk of cucumber, finely chop and put into the small bowl. Chop up the rest of the cucumber into chunks, put half in the blender and the rest with the tomatoes in the serving bowl. Quarter the bell pepper, finely chop a ¼ and add to the small bowl. Chop the rest and divide between the blender and serving bowl.
  3. To the blender, add the garlic, basil, olive oil, vinegar, cumin, oregano, cayenne, salt and a good grind of black pepper, at least 10 twists. Securely fasten the lid and blend, until the mixture is completely smooth, about 2 minutes.
  4. Add the rest of the contents of the serving bowl into the blender. Fasten and blend for about 20 seconds, until the ingredients are broken up into small pieces. If you prefer it slightly smoother, then blend for longer, then pour back into the serving bowl.
  5. Add a small pinch of salt to the small bowl of garnishes, stir and store in the fridge. Chill the soup for at least 2 hours, or up to 24 hours in the fridge.
  6. Before serving, taste, and add any additional seasoning. To serve, divide the soup into small bowls, or glasses, and top with the reserved cucumber, bell pepper and reserved tomato seeds. Top with a few torn basil leaves and a light sprinkle of pepper. Leftover servings keep well covered and refrigerated, for up to 3 days.

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