Mid-August in NC means it’s time to savor tomatoes! Whip up this refreshing Gazpacho alongside grilled fish and corn on the cob for a mouthwatering, easy dinner. (This chilled soup is even great after several days in the fridge, so it’s an ideal way to pack vegetables in your brown bag lunch.)
Tomatoes are loaded with the antioxidant lycpopene, a carotenoid and the predominant pigment in red-hued fruits and vegetables. Research has shown that lycopene has cancer-fighting potential (the evidence is especially strong for prostate cancer), and may lower the risk of heart attack and stroke.
6 medium to large ripe tomatoes, cut into chunks
1 medium cucumber—peeled, halved, seeded and cut into chunks
1 green, yellow or orange bell pepper, cut into chunks
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
Pinch of salt and black pepper to taste
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil or cilantro
Favorite hot sauce and/or red pepper flakes for serving
In a blender or food processor, combine the tomatoes, cucumber, bell pepper, garlic, oil and vinegar and process until coarsely pureed. Pour water in slowly while processing until desired consistency is reached. Season with salt and black pepper to taste. Refrigerate until chilled (or overnight). Top with fresh basil or cilantro and serve with hot sauce or red pepper flakes on the side.
Yield: 4 Servings
Nutritional Analysis (approximate): Calories 111, Fat 7.5g, Saturated fat 1g, Cholesterol 0mg, Carbohydrate 10g, Dietary fiber 3g, Sodium 199mg, Protein 3g.