Chilled Plum Tomato Gazpacho, Andalusian Style

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This soup is so easy to make. I peel the peppers for the garnish with a potato peeler to make them more digestible, or you can even roast them and peel them, or use more piquillo peppers. Piquillo peppers are small tangy peppers from Navarra in northern Spain. They are roasted in open fires, then peeled by hand and packed in their own tasty juices.

Ingredients

  • 1.5 kg plum tomatoes
  • 400 g tin or bottle of piquillo peppers
  • 1 cucumber
  • 1 celery stalk
  • 4 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 4 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 200 ml good-quality extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 slices of bread
  • Few splashes of Tabasco sauce
  • Salt

For the Croutons

  • 2 thick slices of white bread
  • Olive oil for drizzling

For the Garnish

  • 1 red pepper, deseeded and diced
  • 1 yellow pepper, deseeded and diced
  • ¼ cucumber, peeled and diced
  • 1 small red onion, diced
  • 1 small bunch of mint, leaves torn
  • 1 small bunch of basil, leaves torn
  • Olive oil

Method

Blend the tomatoes, piquillo peppers with their juices, cucumber, celery, vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, oil and bread, together with Tabasco and salt to taste, until smooth and creamy. Pass through a fine sieve until it is the consistency of double cream. If you like, you can repeat the sieving several times for a very refined soup. Adjust the seasoning with more vinegar, Tabasco, Worcestershire sauce and salt if necessary (remembering that chilling mutes the flavours of such seasonings). Chill.

Make the croutons by toasting the slices of bread, then drizzling them with olive oil afterwards and cutting them into 5mm cubes.

When the soup is well chilled, serve scattered with the garnishes and croutons.

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