Saturday, August 1, 2009

A Cool Breeze

Usually by this point in the summer, I ache for the cool days of fall. I've had enough heat and stickiness to last me through another Chicago winter.

Not this summer. In July we had an average of 69.7 degrees here in Chicago, and I can't say that I have minded not having to haul out the air conditioner.

But earlier this week temps crept up past normal, and my kitchen felt thick with humidity. I had cucumbers and onions to use and decided that this was the perfect time to make gazpacho, especially since I had gotten a recipe from a wonderful home cook who, fortunately for me, doesn't believe in keeping her recipes a secret.

With her blessing I am posting this recipe. It's so simple to make and includes watermelon, an unexpected ingredient that adds a hint of sweetness and feels like a cool breeze sliding down my throat.

Gazpacho (by Amy Currie, author of Memoirs of a Home Cook)
2 cups tomato juice
2 tomatoes, cored and chopped
1 seedless cucumber, peeled and chopped
1 red pepper, cored and chopped
1 medium red onion, chopped
1 cup seedless watermelon, cubed
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons olive oil
salt and pepper

Pulse tomato juice, tomatoes, cucumber, red pepper, red onion, and watermelon in a food processor. Add vinegar and oil. Season to taste w/salt and pepper. Serves 6-8.

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