Well, it's not exactly gazpacho, not the big bowls of spicy tomato soup we've come to associate with gazpacho. But we know that real Spanish gazpacho began as a bread and water soup in the fields, then morphed into a white almond soup. Tomatoes came much much later, as reported here last week.
I thought that I could embellish a favorite zucchini soup and turn it into a gazpacho. It's amazing what one little jalapeno can do in a pot. The garnish is chopped tomato, avocado, and scallions. Beautiful, refreshing bowls.
8 medium zucchini, thickly sliced
1 jalapeno, cored, seeded, and quartered
5 cups chicken stock
Salt and pepper, to taste
1 cup fresh basil leaves
1 ripe avocado, pitted and chopped
Juice of 1 lime
2 tomatoes, peeled, seeded, and chopped
4 scallions, chopped
1. In a large saucepan, combine the zucchini, jalapeno, chicken stock, salt, and pepper. Bring to a boil, lower the heat, cover the pan, and simmer for 10 minutes. Add the basil and simmer for 2 minutes more.
2. In a blender, puree the soup in batches. Tip it into a large plastic container. Taste for seasoning and add more salt and pepper, if you like. Set aside to cool. (You can serve chilled, but not stone cold.)
3. In a small bowl, sprinkle the avocado with lime juice.
4. Ladle the soup into bowls. Garnish each with tomato, avocado, and scallion. Sprinkle with salt. Sheryl Julian
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ContributorsSheryl Julian, the Globe's Food Editor, writes regularly for the Food section.
Devra First is the Globe's food reporter and restaurant critic. Her reviews appear weekly in the Food section.
Ellen Bhang reviews Cheap Eats restaurants for the Globe and writes about wine.