Sunday, May 4, 2008

More Flavors of the Eastern Mediterranean: Gazpacho Recipe

As promised... More from Spice: Flavors of the Eastern Mediterranean.

Read through this recipe and you will find the steps are quite simple. You may even have all of the ingredients on hand. The tough part for me was finding the sungold tomatoes. I almost made this recipe this weekend, but I had trouble finding the tomatoes. Any readers out there know where I could get sungolds?

Thanks again to Nicole, Cousin of Food, for this recipe.

Golden Gazpacho with Condiments

Condiments are fun! Add minced fennel, minced melon, crab meat, Aleppo chilies, or minced onion to this most delicious of gazpachos. Just be sure to chop all the vegetables or any garnish as small as possible to keep the elegance of the dish.
Makes 4 cups to serve 4.

2 pints sungold tomatoes (about 6 cups)
½ cup fresh, plain bread crumbs or ½ small pita bread, torn up into ½-inch pieces
2 tablespoons Spanish sherry vinegar
¾ cup extra virgin olive oil
¼ teaspoon turmeric
¼ teaspoon curry powder
1 tablespoon salt plus more to taste
Black pepper to taste
1 cup bottled sparkling mineral water
1 cup hand-torn bread pieces (tear them with your fingers, to make little croutons)
1 hard boiled egg
1 red bell pepper, seeded, ribs removed and finely minced
6 chives, finely minced

1. Place the tomatoes, bread crumbs, vinegar, ½ cup of the olive oil, the turmeric, curry powder, 1 tablespoon salt, pepper, and sparkling water in a blender. Puree until smooth.
2. Strain through a fine sieve or china cap (a very fine cone-shaped sieve) into a medium stainless steel or glass mixing bowl, pushing it through with the back of a small ladle or pestle. Discard the pulp and seeds and check soup for seasoning. It should be a beautiful golden color. Chill in the refrigerator for at least one hour.
3. Chill 4 soup bowls.
4. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
5. In a small bowl, toss the hand torn bits of bread in ¼ cup of olive oil and place on a small heavy baking sheet. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Bake for about 7 minutes until golden brown and crispy. Cool and set aside.
6. Grate the hard cooked egg with the finest side of a box grater so that you have little egg “jimmies.” Place them in a small bowl and season them with salt and pepper to taste. Set aside and chill.
7. Ladle the soup into 4 chilled soup bowls. Serve immediately with the egg, peppers, croutons and chives, all passed around separately so that everyone can add a new one per bite.

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