Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Chilled Gazpacho Soup

This soup is so very refreshing when served straight from the refrigerator and into a simp0le, white bowl. You can make it days in advance of a party and you can use any combination of veggies that you have on hand.

6 large cucumbers, peeled, seeded and diced into ½-inch pieces, about 4 to 5 cups
1 large (green, yellow or red) bell pepper, seeded, veins removed, diced into ½-inch pieces, about 1 cup
1 medium red onion, peeled and diced into ½-inch pieces, about 1 cup
1 large jalapeno pepper, seeded, veins removed, diced, about ½ cup
2 medium garlic cloves, peeled and minced, (about 1 teaspoon)
1/3 cup white wine vinegar
2 tablespoons all natural granulated sugar
1 (28-ounce) can diced tomatoes
1 quart home made chicken broth, or low sodium chicken broth
2 tablespoons olive oil
Salt and freshly ground pepper
2 to 4 drops hot pepper sauce
4 (1-inch thick) slices white wheat bread, crust removed, processed into about 2 cups coarse crumbs
½ cup chopped fresh cilantro

Place the cucumbers, bell pepper, red onion, jalapeno pepper and garlic into a large bowl. (I use a deep stock pot for this.) Add the white wine vinegar and granulated sugar. Pour in the diced tomatoes, chicken broth and olive oil. Season with salt and pepper, and as much hot sauce as you like! Stir in the bread crumbs.

For a really slushy soup, transfer several ladles of the soup to a food processor, or blender, and pulse to emulsify. Pour the emulsified soup back into the bowl. Stir and continue until you have emulsified about half of the soup.

Stir in the fresh cilantro. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and place into the refrigerator to chill for at least several hours until very cold.

Servings: This makes a big batch of soup – plenty for a crowd.
Preparation Time: 20 minutes

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