Over the years we’ve covered the entire spectrum of gazpachos – from the lush red of the classic tomato, to the cool white of almond and grape via the verdant green of avocado. I suppose we could start searching for other colours, possibly blue, but that would be getting dangerously close to Bridget Jones territory and before you know it we would be getting into all sorts of hilarious scrapes. So instead we have revisited red, this time trying a slightly more complex Rick Stein recipe.
Preparation time: 15 minutes
Cooking time: 20 – 30 minutes
Skill level: easy
- stale white bread – good stuff, not Mother’s Pride – 50g
- 2 large red peppers
- very ripe tomatoes – skinned – 1kg
- 1 cucumber
- 3 cloves of garlic – crushed
- extra virgin olive oil – 150ml
- red wine or sherry vinegar – 4 tbsp
For the garnish
- croutons – white bread – cut into small squares and fried in olive oil
- green pepper – cut into a small dice
- cucumber – cut into a small dice
- spring onions – finely chopped
Preheat your oven to 220c (gas 7)
Put the red peppers on a baking sheet and roast in the oven for 20-30 minutes until the skin is black and blistered. (You’ll need to turn them a few times to ensure an even roasting)
Place in a plastic bag (or bowl covered in clingfilm) and leave to sweat until cool enough to handle.
Remove the stalk, seeds and skin, roughly chop and set aside (be sure to keep any juice as this all adds to the flavour).
Meanwhile, pour some water over the stale bread and set aside for half an hour to soak.
Quarter the skinned tomatoes and scoop out the seeds into a sieve over a bowl. Squash down on the seeds with the back of a ladle to extract as much of the juice as you can.
Peel the cucumber, cut in half lengthways and scoop out the seeds with a teaspoon (discard seeds) and roughly chop.
Put the tomatoes, their juice, roasted peppers, chopped cucumber, soaked bread, crushed garlic, vinegar, olive oil and 1½ teaspoons of salt into a liquidizer and blend until smooth. YOU MAY HAVE TO DO THIS IN 2 BATCHES, depending on the capacity of your liquidizer.
Thin with a little cold water if necessary (we didn’t), check and adjust the seasoning, pour into a serving bowl and place in the fridge for at least 2 hours.
Serve with the garnishes and a further drizzle of olive oil.
Verdict: Fandabbydozy. Liquid summer. A classic gazpachio.
Drink: Fandabbyboozy. A few Cornish ales on the grass outside The Palm Tree.
Entertainment: Back home in time for ‘Dad’s Army’.