Saturday, July 9, 2011

Cucumber Gazpacho

I am in love with this new cold soup recipe I just got from Chef Peter Dale with The National restaurant in Athens, GA. I ate there back in early May when I visited Athens. Since then I could not stop dreaming about this Cucumber Gazpacho soup I ordered. So I contacted Chef Peter Dale and he graciously shared this delightful and refreshing cold soup with me.
It's the perfect soup for summer. Cold, light, healthy, and really simple to make. But I promise the people you share this soup with will think it was complex to make. After on bite the first words that may come from their mouth will be "uuuuuummmm". They will be surprised, with eye's wide open and the first thing they will ask you is "What is in this"?
I'm telling you. It's the best, and lucky is the recipe.
Cucumber Gazpacho 2 quarts English cucumbers, peeled, seeded & chopped (about 8 cups)
1 1/4 cups good quality extra virgin olive oil

1 cup ice water
1/3 cup white wine vinegar
1 1/2 tablespoon lemon juice

1 garlic clove minced
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/3 teaspoon ground black pepper
pinch of ground cayenne pepper

Puree all ingredients in a blender or food processor on the most powerful setting. Allow the motor to run for at least one minute per batch. This helps create the emulsion giving the gazpacho a thicker consistency. Place in the refrigerator until well chilled. Because all the cucumbers are slightly different, check for seasoning and acidity before serving. Add more olive oil or vinegar depending on your preference. Serves 6-8.*optional garnish - chopped poach shrimp: poach in water with lemon and old bay seasoning. when done put in a ice cold water bath to stop the cooking process. chop up and mix with Italian parsley and olive oil and add some to each bowl of soup for a nice surprise!
I hope you are staying cool this hot summer!

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