Simmering hot summer days call for something to cool you off. Who wants to stand over a steaming stove in this kind of North Carolina heat?! Some days no cooking required recipes save the day.
Not only is this chilled make-ahead creation flavorful and nutrient packed, but most of the work is done by way of blender. So easy even the beginner cook can tackle this with confidence and stride.
I found this particular recipe in one of my favorite cookbooks, which I've talked about in my posts before. Just Married: A Cookbook For Newlyweds by Caroline Chambers is stockpiled with deliciously simple meals. Not to mention, it's the perfect gift for a newly wed (or anyone in general!) who wants to learn how to cook well.
I'll be borrowing more from this book this week and look forward to showing you a range of dishes. Be on the lookout for classic comforts such as Banana-Oat Pancakes and "Mom's Mac and Cheese" to awesome flavor packed Pork Tenderloin and Sesame Soy Tuna Poke Bowls.
You'll soon find out why this is my #1 go to cook book! There are meals for any mood, style, or speed. I love trying new things from this book and hope you will love learning these recipes with me.
Gazpacho with Charred Jalapeno Crema
3 red bell peppers, halved and seeded
2 (about 3/4 lb [340 g] each) English cucumbers, peeled
1.5 lb [680 g] ripe Roma tomatoes, roughly chopped
1 jalapeno chile, seeded and roughly chopped
1/4 yellow onion, roughly chopped
1/4 cup [60 ml] sherry vinegar
1 tablespoon of salt
1/2 teaspoon of black pepper
2 tablespoons of EVOO
1/2 cup Greek yogurt
1 tsp fresh lemon juice
To make the gazpacho:
Roughly chop 1 red bell pepper and 1 cucumber and put into the blender.
Add the roma tomatoes, 1/2 of the jalapeno chile, onion, vinegar, salt and pepper.
Blend for 45 seconds to 1 minute on high speed, until completely smooth.
Turn the blender to low speed and slowly drizzle in the olive oil until combined, about 15 seconds.
Pour into a large bowl. (Some people prefer to strain their gazpacho base through a fine-mesh steve for a smooth consistency but I actually enjoyed the texture.)
Finely dice the remaining 2 red bell peppers and 1 cucumber.
Stir them into the puree and leave some aside for topping if desired.
Taste and season with additional vinegar, salt and black pepper if needed. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight, or at least for 5 hours before serving so the flavors can blend.
To make the jalapeno crema:
If you have a gas stove, turn a burner onto the highest setting.
Using tongs, hold the jalapeno half directly in the flame until it is charred all over.
If you have an electric stove, place the jalapeno half under the broiler until charred all over, turning every 4 minutes or so.
Transfer the jalapeno to the blender once properly charred.
In the blender, add the yogurt, lemon juice and salt.
Blend for 10 to 15 seconds, until smooth.
Transfer to an airtight container and refrigerate until ready to use. (It will keep up to 5 days).
To serve, transfer the soup to bowls and serve with a dollop of the jalapeno cream.
If you REALLY don't want to turn on the stove, then skip the jalapeno crema and use a dollop of chilled sour cream instead.
Don't forget to tag me @SiggyFromScratch on Instagram if you tried this recipe and liked it!
Here is a link to the cookbook. I hope you'll consider buying this to have a copy of your own!
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