when i was 10, my mom served me a tomato based gazpacho, and of course, my immature taste buds were appalled. fast-forward 20 years, and i know how to appreciate this delicate soup – it’s a perfect dish for summer!
this strawberry gazpacho can be thrown together the night before, blended prior to serving, and it will seriously impress! my girlfriend erin served it the other night at a girls get together for the bachelorette finale, and we all swooned. it’s tangy, hearty, healthy and savoury-sweet – the perfect start or finish to a meal. i especially loved the added texture of the almond in the garnish. if you don’t want the extra chopping work of the full garnish, throw on a crumble of goat cheese, and you’re golden.
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(serves 6-10 based on portion size)
- 2 pounds strawberries, hulled and lightly crushed
- 1/2 cup chopped onion
- 1/2 cup chopped red bell pepper
- 1 (5-ounce) english cucumber, peeled, seeded, and cut into 1/2-inch-thick slices
- 1/2 clove garlic, crushed
- 1/2 cup fresh tarragon leaves
- 1/4 cup best quality balsamic vinegar
- 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
- 1/4 cup finely minced hulled strawberries
- 1 bunch chives, finely minced
- 1/4 cup finely minced red bell pepper
- 1/4 cup finely minced, peeled, seeded english cucumber
- 2 tablespoons almond oil
- lightly toasted marcona almonds, halved lengthwise, for garnish
- sprigs fresh chervil, for garnish
1. make the gazpacho: in a large bowl, mix together strawberries, onion, bell pepper, cucumber, garlic, tarragon, vinegar, and olive oil; season with salt and pepper. using your hands, gently crush mixture. cover with plastic wrap and transfer to refrigerator. let chill overnight.
2. transfer strawberry mixture to the jar of a blender; blend until smooth. season with salt and pepper. if mixture seems too thick, add a little water to thin out. transfer to refrigerator to chill.
3. make the garnish: place strawberries, chives, bell pepper, cucumber, and almond oil in a medium bowl; gently toss to combine.
4. divide garnish evenly between bowls; top with almonds. pour over chilled soup and garnish with chervil; serve immediately.