Sunday, August 26, 2012

Watermelon-Tomato Gazpacho with a Kick {Low-Carb + Raw + GF + Vegetarian}


I recently tried gazpacho at a new restaurant in my area that works with locally produced foods--the name of the restauraunt is fittingly, Local Foods.  I remember having had gazpacho once in the past and not liking it, perhaps it was residual distaste for it produced by an episode of  The Simpsons I watched as a kid where Lisa Simpson made gazpacho as a much derided vegetarian alternative to a roast pig (Homer's doing, of course).  My takeaway feeling from the episode was that I'd eat gazpacho when pigs could fly, but incidentally by the end of the episode Homer's roasted pig was, literally, a flying pig.  So, it was destiny...  

Watermelon-Tomato Gazpacho with a Kick
{Vegetarian + Vegan + Low-Carb + Gluten Free + Raw}
The day I discovered my repressed love of gazpacho I was faced with the choice of getting either a cup of watermelon and tomato gazpacho or committing to an entire (definitely not low carb--oh no!)  falafel sandwich.  I've never been a huge fan of raw-tomatoes except on salads.  I regrettably hate Bloody Mary's--the spectre and the alcoholic brunch drink--and V-8 juice and so when I opted to try the soup I harbored a great fear that tomato gazpacho was bad enough, but adding melons to it would make it...well, even less good. 

But, as it so happens, I was wrong.  It took me a while to get used to the soup--its coldness and the sweet and savory combination, but I decided by the end of the cup that I really liked it.  And, weeks later, I still craved more of it--and, indeed, went back and had more!--and continued to crave it.  Hence, me trying my hand at making it for myself.

The base recipe I used was this one: Watermelon + Tomato Gazpacho  But, as I usually do--just to make things more interesting and usually more tasty, to boot, I tweaked the recipe so that it would more closely mimic the gazpacho I had gotten at the restaurant which was was more tomato-heavy with a hit of garlic and spiciness.  The changes I made to the recipe are as follows:


  • Doubled tomatoes from 2 to 4
  • Added 1/4 large yellow bell pepper
  • Used 2 serrano chili peppers, partially seeded
  • Used 4 small cloves of garlic
  • Did NOT strain or liquify ingredients (I wanted a little bit of texture)
  • Used blender rather than food processor
To garnish my soup I used matchsticks of jicama, cilantro leaves, and chunks of watermelon.  After photographing I added some diced avocado.

The soup was delicious and it hits ALL  of my dietary likes:  my watermelon-tomato gazpacho with a kick is Vegetarian (Vegan, even), Gluten Free, Raw, and Low-Carb!  Score!   Even if, like me, you are disposed to think the watermelon and tomato combination seems suspect, give it a try.  I feel pretty confident that it will surprise you--in a good way.


Happy, Healthy, Weird Eating!
Kate


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