Spicy, yet refreshing, chilled gazpacho soup — so popular among Iberian (Spanish and Portuguese) cuisines — delivers a bowl full of vegetable nutrition! Made with fresh tomatoes, bell peppers, cucumber and onion as key ingredients, gazpacho is a deliciously satisfying way to enjoy the seasonal flavors of summer-fresh produce. Besides their great taste, ripe tomatoes are a super source of lycopene and vitamins A and C!
medium tomatoes, quartered
1 medium green or yellow bell pepper, seeded and quartered
1 small cucumber, cut in large pieces
½ small red onion, coarsely chopped
2 garlic cloves, smashed
½ jalapeño pepper*
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil leaves, or 2 teaspoons dried basil
1 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano leaves, or 1 teaspoon dried oregano
4 cups (32 ounces) low-sodium tomato or vegetable juice**
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
¼ teaspoon freshly-ground black pepper
1 medium ripe avocado, peeled, seeded and sliced
¼ cup crumbled feta cheese
Before you begin: Wash your hands.
- Place the tomatoes, bell pepper, cucumber, onion, garlic and jalapeño pepper in a large blender or food processor bowl. Add the basil and oregano. Pulse until coarsely chopped (but not puréed).
- Transfer the tomato mixture to a large bowl.
- Add the tomato or vegetable juice, vinegar and black pepper. Blend well.
- Cover; refrigerate for 2 hours or overnight to chill and develop the flavors.
- Pour into soup bowls or mugs. Top with the avocado and feta cheese.
*Instead of jalapeño, substitute a dash or more of hot sauce, to taste.
**Choose either regular or spicy tomato juice or vegetable juice, depending on your flavor preference.
- For a festive occasion, offer a variety of garnishes to spoon on top of soup: croutons, chopped Kalamata olives, chopped hard-cooked egg, chopped ham, crumbled feta cheese, diced avocado or chopped herbs (basil, cilantro, green onion, oregano or parsley).
Serving size: 1½ cup
Calories: 100; Calories from fat: 45; Total fat: 5g; Saturated fat: 1.5g; Trans fat: 0g; Cholesterol: 5mg; Sodium: 150mg; Total carbohydrate: 13g; Dietary fiber: 4g; Sugars: 7g; Protein: 3g
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