It's in the 90s today. The kind of day where all you want to do is lay in front of the fan and drink ice cold water. I made a chilled tomato and veggie soup. I love gazspacho a lot. The challenge for me when making it is keeping it from tasting like a big bowl of salsa or tomato sauce. I do believe I have solved that problem. Today I used lemon juice, fresh basil and fresh mint. The combination of these three ingredients keeps it fresh, light and just a wee bit tart. I scarfed down a big bowl when I was done. It was quite refreshing. This was also fantastically easily.
Use whatever summer vegetables you have on hand. Dice them small, about the size of a pea. I used green peppers, an English cucumber, green onions, celery and red cabbage. It's what I had on hand and it's what I like. English cucumbers are less watery than a traditional cucumber, which is nice here. Summer squash might be nice here, but remove the seeds. You really want veggies with a little crunch. The small diced pieces make this feel more like a soup.
Slice some French bread very thin then cut those slices into quarters. I used my favorite multigrain baguette.
Fry up the bread bits in butter and olive oil. It's okay, the soup is all healthy veggies.
Serve well chilled with the croutons on top. Yummy! This might also be good with a little goat cheese too.
Chilled Summer Tomato Soup
2 large cans whole peeled tomatoes, including the juice
1 TBSP fresh garlic, rough chopped
2 TBSP fresh basil, rough chopped
2 TBSP fresh mint, rough chopped
1 green jalapeno, rough chopped (optional)
juice of two lemons
1 cup diced English cucumber
1 cup diced green bell pepper
1 cup diced celery
1 cup thinly sliced green onion
1 cup finely chopped red cabbage
In a large bowl, blend well the two cans of peeled tomatoes using a stick blender. Add garlic, basil, mint, jalapeno, and lemon juice to bowl and blend again. Add the remaining ingredients and stir well. Chill for about an hour to allow flavors to marry.
Use about 4 inches of baguette and slice thin. Cut these slices into quarters. Fry in a hot saute pan with 2 TBSP butter and 2 TBSP olive oil until golden brown. Use as a garnish for chilled soup.