There are two key secrets to making this truly delicious, refreshing, chilled Summer soup. The first is to use ripe sweet tomatoes- not always easy to buy but kept out of the fridge for a few days, tomatoes can be ripened at home. The second thing is not to use a food processor or liquidiser - a fine Gazpacho is made by pounding or grating the ingredients.
Traditionally Gazpacho would be made with vegetables, breadcrumbs, olive oil, and garlic as a thick cold soup. There are multiple variations including cucumber, watermelon, almond or even strawberry. This very basic recipe simply relies on the lovely flavour of tomatoes with a hint of basil and minimum additional ingredients. It is lighter and more refreshing than most. For us, nothing could be more delightful.
Ingredients for 4 people
8 x Plum Tomatoes
1 small Red Onion
6 Basil Leaves, shredded
2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
1 Tablespoon Balsamic Vinegar
6 drops of Tabasco
Salt, Freshly Ground Black Pepper, a little Caster Sugar
Halve the tomatoes and remove the green core but nothing else. We include the pips.
No need to blanch and peel the tomatoes. Use the coarse side of a traditional grater over a deep bowl. Grate the flesh of the tomatoes off the skins. Discard the skins.
Peel, halve and grate the red onion into the tomato mix.
Add the basil leaves, olive oil, balsamic and Tabasco. Season well with Malvern salt, pepper and a little caster sugar.
Stir the mixture together then place in the fridge to macerate and chill.
Serve in chilled bowls along with some crusty breadcrumbs, croutes and viola petals.