Gazpacho with garlic cream

by mimithorisson

‘A cooked tomato is like a cooked oyster: ruined.’ André Simon, wine writer

Today was a perfect summer day. The sun was shining, the birds were singing and the breeze smelt of rose bouquets. I couldn’t think of a better lunch than having a bowl of chilled gazpacho, the summer soup.

I somehow feel like a ‘Bewitched’ character when I prepare this soup – there is something so ceremonial about the green and red color combination, and I love to casually throw in the vegetables in a large pot, letting the food processor perform all its magic for me. The result is a poignant soup bursting with tangy flavors, so healthy and filled with sunshine. I love adding the garlic cream and home-made croutons – it’s a real treat.

Ingredients: (serves 4 to 6)

5 tomatoes, de-seeded and diced
1 red pepper, de-seeded and diced
1 cucumber, peeled, de-seeded and diced
2 stalks celery, diced
1 onion, chopped
3 slices of stale white bread
150 ml extra-virgin olive oil
40 ml milk
1 tsp tabasco
1 tbsp red wine vinegar
Salt and pepper to taste

Mix the diced tomatoes, red pepper, cucumber, celery, onion, shredded bread, olive oil, milk, tabasco, vinegar and pepper in a large bowl. Mix well. Cover and refrigerate for 2-3 hours.

Blend until smooth, add salt and vinegar to taste. Mix well. If you prefer a more ‘liquid’ consistency, add a little water. Keep chilled until serving time.

Garlic cream
1 clove of garlic, minced
100 ml double or single cream

Mince garlic with garlic crusher. In a small bowl, mix cream and crushed garlic, stir well. Pass the sauce through a sieve. Set aside and keep cool.

Garlic croutons:
1/2 stale baguette bread
70 ml olive oil
1 clove garlic, sliced finely
Salt to taste

Preheat oven 180° C/350 F. Slice stale baguette bread into cubes. In a large bowl, mix cubed bread, olive oil, garlic and salt. Place on parchment covered baking tray and bake for 15 minutes or until golden. Set aside to cool.

Serve chilled gazpacho soup with garlic cream (drizzled) and croutons.