One of the best things about summer here and in Europe is the late summer nights you can enjoy!
In Spain the sun was only going down at ten at night and here in Morocco we are an hour behind, so it generally goes down at about nine at the moment. Lots of time to do things after work!!
One of my favourite summer dishes has to be gazpacho. It is easy to make, healthy and very refreshing!
According to Larousse, the dish was originally a labourer’s meal made of bread, cucumber, tomato, onion and red bell pepper. Seasoned with olive oil and vinegar and served ice cold. The dish originally came from Seville and the name is of Arabic origin meaning “soaked bread”.
In Spain it is often served with the garnish of amongst other things red pepper, croutons, cucumber and olives. You are often asked if you want the garnish in the soup or on the side and we even saw it being served in beer mugs in one tapas bar. You can also buy it ready made in supermarkets in milk cartons, the quality however varies greatly!
Here is a simple recipe that you can adapt as you wish, add more of whatever you like and leave out what you don’t!
1kg ripe tomatoes, peeled, seeded and roughly chopped
1 red onion, roughly chopped
1 small cucumber, peeled and chopped
1 small green or red pepper, chopped
3 cloves crushed garlic
1 cup water
175ml olive oil
2 Tablespoons sherry vinegar
Salt and pepper to taste
Set aside a small amount of the vegetables for garnish
Put all the ingredients except the croutons in a food processor and blend till smooth.
Check the consistency and add more water if necessary.
Season to taste with more vinegar, oil and salt and pepper.
Chill for at least 2-3 hours before serving.
Serve garnished with chopped tomato, pepper and onion and croutons.