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Thursday, July 26, 2012

White Gazpacho

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We eat a ton of soup in the winter. It's one of the (only) redeeming qualities of winter. I might be miserable 95% of the time, but at least I can look forward to steaming bowls of soup served with lots of bread for dipping. From about April to October, though, soup is totally off of my radar. That is, until we enjoyed dinner at our friends Jon and Michelle's a few weeks ago, and they introduced us to this White Gazpacho.

The ingredient list might sound a little bit odd--green grapes, broth-soaked bread, cucumber, and almonds. But, as Michelle said, she liked each of these things on their own, which is what prompted her to give the recipe a try. The cucumber was probably the strongest flavor in the soup, but you could definitely pick up on each of the other main ingredients as well and together, the combination was in perfect harmony. Ryan and I liked it so much that as we were discussing what to serve his parents the following day after inviting them for dinner, Ryan immediately requested we make this soup again.

Served as a first course, or as part of a meal alongside sandwiches and salad (as we did), this was a wonderful introduction to the world of summer soups!

Do you have any favorite "warm weather" soups?

One Year Ago: Sesame Soy Green Beans
Two Years Ago: Peanut Butterscotch Bars 

White Gazpacho
from Simply Recipes

-2 cups of crustless stale bread, broken into pieces (if you don't have stale bread, toast the bread first)
-2 cups chicken or vegetable broth
-1 1/2 tsp salt
-1 cup slivered blanched almonds (must be blanched)
-2 cups green seedless grapes, cut in half
-2 cucumbers, peeled, seeded and chopped
-1-3 garlic cloves, chopped (adjust to your garlic preference)
-2-3 tbsp cider or sherry vinegar
-1/4 cup olive oil
-chives, for garnish

1. Heat the broth in a medium saucepan over medium heat until steamy. Remove from heat and add the bread. Allow to cool.
2. In the bowl of the food processor, pulse the almonds, salt, and garlic until pulverized. Add the soaked bread mixture, grapes, and cucumbers. Pulse to a rough puree.
3. Add 2 tbsp of the vinegar, pulsing to combine. Taste. Add additional tbsp if needed.
4. With the motor running, drizzle in the olive oil. Taste. Salt if needed.
5. Chill until ready to serve. Garnish with chopped chives.