Saturday, May 30, 2020

Classic Gazpacho - Recipe by Jose' Andres

We love this soup.  So much in fact that a picture of it is up at the top of this blog in the header image!  I had grand goals of posting about it years ago, better late than never.   The soup is cold and refreshing and perfect with just about anything.  Also, it's EASY.  It does take some forethought as you want to give the ingredients time to marry together, but other than that, it's a snap.  

This is the perfect summer soup because most of the ingredients can all be found fresh in the summer.  My local grocery store did not have sherry vinegar, but I was able to find it at Whole Foods.    

I hear it described as a cold tomato soup, which is factually accurate, but I don't like to think of it that way since I am not a huge fan of tomatoes.  I do NOT like hot tomato soup.  Not one bit.  Or too much raw tomato on anything.  SO, the fact that this soup is so amazingly good and perfect yet chock full of pureed tomatoes speaks to how well the other ingredients shine as well.   

This recipe is by Jose' Andres, a chef we follow and have enjoyed eating at several of his restaurants.  

Recipe - Classic Gazpacho by Jose' Andres

1-1/2 lbs tomatoes, roughly chopped, plus 1/2 tomato diced for garnish
3/4 medium cucumber, peeled and roughly chopped, remainder diced for garnish
1/2 medium green bell pepper, roughly chopped, remainder diced for garnish
1 garlic clove, crushed
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for garnish
1 tablespoon sherry vinegar
1/2 tsp salt

1. Combine ingredients (except garnish) in a large bowl, toss to combine.  Refrigerate for at least 12 hours, up to 1 day. 

2. Transfer to a blender and blend until smooth.  Serve immediately or refrigerate up to 3 days.  When ready to serve, top each serving with garnish of vegetables and drizzle of olive oil.   Optional - top with homemade croutons or serve with crusty bread.  

Saturday, May 2, 2020

Easy Pickled Red Onions

My life has not been the same since I discovered I like pickled vegetables. I do not like actual PICKLES, so was hesitant to make any pickled vegetable.   After better understanding what makes a vegetable "pickled", I realized it's not the pickled part I do not like about pickles, its the dill.  Yuk. Since most pickles are dill pickles, you can see why I decided all pickled thing were gross.   Pickling vegetables is so easy, and adds some crunch and ZING to dishes.   I talked about this back in 2012 in a blog post about Banh Mi, check it out here - Grilled Banh Mi Sandwiches.


Pickled red onions are amazing.  They are good on so many things, the main thing being tacos. Any kind of tacos.  Think tacos are boring?  Looking for a new take on your go-to taco recipe?  Just want to jazz the up a bit?  Look no further than pickled red onions!  It's so easy, and I'm telling you, you will be addicted once you start making these. 

Large red onion, sliced

Bring pickling mixture to a boil

simmering the pickling liquid. Warning, do not put your face over the steam.  It is STRONG. 

Pour hot liquid over onions and stir until well coated. Break apart the onion. 

After hanging out in the refrigerator for 5 hours

Make yourself some tasty tacos with your favorite toppings, including pickled red onion

Enjoy your tasty taco! 

1-1/2 cups white wine vinegar
1/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 jalapeno pepper (or any hot pepper of your choosing), thinly sliced
2 dried bay leaves
1 large red onion, thinly sliced

1. Combine ingredients through bay leaves in a small sauce pan and bring to a boil.  Simmer on low heat for 5 minutes.
2. Put your sliced onion in a glass container, enough to cover with the liquid.  Cover with the liquid and let sit for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally to get a good coat on the onions.
3. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.
4. Drain, discard bay leaves, and eat!