Gazpacho Soup with Green Chili 

This famous cold soup is the best thing to have on a hot day is a summer-time favorite at the chateau.  Traditionally ground by a dornillo (large wooden mortar and pestle) by agricultural works in vegetable gardens, using my easy canned version, you can make home-made gazpacho in about 5 minutes.  It keeps well, so it is perfect for dinner parties or picnics, as it is served cold.  The alternate, home-made and roasted version takes about 15 minutes.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 c. day old French bread, crusts removed
  • 1 16 oz. can Cento Grown in Italy tomatoes, if available (removing any bay leaves)
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 T. sugar
  • 1 T. paprika
  • Fleur de sel sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 c. sherry wine vinegar (if desired, or you can substitute red wine vinegar)
  • 1/2 c. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 c. or more diced Green Chiles from Hatch, NM

For garnishing:

  • 1 handful fresh flat-leaf parsley, coarsely chopped
  • 1/2 lemon sliced

DIRECTIONS:

Soak the bread in 1 cup of water for 5 minutes, and then squeeze out the excess water. Place the bread and everything in high-powered blender, such as a VitaMix (a food processor would also do).  Puree. Serve in chilled bowls or tureen and top with desired garnishes.

[ALTERNATE VERSION FROM SCRATCH]

Take 6 whole tomatoes and slice in half, cutting across, not down.  Take a whole head of garlic and slice off the top 1/2″  placing in a ramekin in the center of a baking sheet, laying the tomatoes with faces open on the same baking sheet.  Put under the broiler on high for about 10 minutes using foil to cover the garlic in the center after about 5 minutes, otherwise it will burn.

Put in a blender, adding the other ingredients , including 1 T. sugar (try 1 t. fig molasses  instead, if you can find it), 1 T. paprika, Fleur de sel sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, 1/4 c. sherry wine vinegar (if desired, or you can substitute red wine vinegar), 1/2 c. extra-virgin olive oil, (including whatever juices/oils are left in ramekin or on the sheet).  Top with the chopped green chiles in the center of each dish.