Thursday, March 22, 2012

Ina –Inspired Gazpacho

It’s Thursday, friends…one more day to go until the weekend!!

Yesterday was Soup Club at school and it was my turn to bring in some homemade soup to share.  Since we had five people signed up (including me) I thought I would mix it up by bringing in a cold soup.  The east coast has seen some warm temperatures the last few days and I thought a chilled concoction would be perfect mixed in with the warmer varieties. 

As I browsed on the computer, I found Ina Garten’s Gazpacho recipe.  I've made her version before, so I thought I would take the general gist of the recipe and add my own twist.

This is what I did to make enough soup for ~20 people (For a smaller batch, cut down measurements or use Ina’s version for a recipe that serves 4 -6).


Note: All of the vegetables were chopped into one-inch pieces.

10 seedless cucumbers (the ones I found were the size of large pickles), seeded and chopped, not peeled
8 red bell peppers, cored and seeded
10 plum tomatoes, seeded and chopped
4 vine tomatoes, seeded and chopped
3 red onions, chopped
6 cloves garlic, minced
23 ounces of tomato juice
½ cup white wine vinegar
¾ cups extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons kosher salt
1 Tablespoon sugar (or more if needed)
2 teaspoons black pepper
Optional: fresh parsley or cilantro, chopped

To make this soup, I found it easiest to have a bowl for garbage (like Rachel Ray) on the counter and a large bowl for the chopped vegetables.  That way, all of your seeds, stems, etc, can go right into the bowl for an easy clean-up.

Roughly chop the cucumbers, red peppers, tomatoes, and onions into one-inch cubes.  Using a food processor with a steel blade, process in small batches until it is coarsely chopped.  Don’t over puree!  

Once all of the vegetables are processed, combine them in a large bowl along with the garlic, salt, pepper, sugar, olive oil, vinegar, and tomato juice.  

Mix well and chill at least overnight. 

A few notes:

·      Less tomato juice was used in my version because I like Gazpacho to be on the thicker side (salsa-like).

·      Sugar was added to balance the tartness of the out-of-season tomatoes.  In the summer, sugar could probably be eliminated.

·      Ina says to process the vegetables one at a time.  I did them all together and it turned out fine. 

·      I reduced the amount of vinegar in my recipe because I thought the tomatoes were acidic enough. 

When my husband came home later in the evening, the smell still lingered in the air and he immediately helped himself a “big ole bowl” of soup.  I got a two thumbs up!

Here we are in the faculty room sampling the other soups.

We had soups of the following varieties: Creamy Yellow Squash soup that was puréed using a food mill for a wonderful consistency (YUM), Crab soup, a Hamburger Vegetable Soup that my kids would love, and a Cream of Chicken and Spinach soup made by my buddy, Givon.  He is KING of anything spinach!  All of the soups were absolutely amazing!

To accompany my dish, I brought some light sour cream and a bag of tortilla chips.  I love a little dollop of sour cream in my Gazpacho so I thought others might also.

My Gazpacho and me…

Ina’s recipe can be found on Food Network’s website using the link below:

 And later on, Lauretta and I did our weekly run.   

We challenged ourselves to see how much of the run we could do on trails and running paths.  I would say we ran about 75% of the run off-road (just a guess....).  We ran nine miles in approximately 7:30 pace for a total time of 1:07.  Thanks, Lauretta!  

And finally...my daughter and I were on our own for dinner, so I let her choose where she wanted to eat.  Normally I go for the healthy food, but tonight we treated ourselves to Five Guys.  Both of us enjoyed a cheeseburger with pickles and ketchup and we shared a small fry (please excuse the overexposed photo).  Since the restaurant was a tad on the chilly side, we brought it home. 

We also wanted to spend time with Willsey.

Make it a great day!



  1. Willsey looks a little apprehensive. It would appear that the discipline has been paying off. It also looks like someone went shopping at Giant for a change instead of Wegmans. Traitor!

  2. Willsey's training is definitely paying off!!