My mother just prepared the best gazpacho I’ve ever tasted in my life! I brought a huge box of tomatoes from my garden back to the Midwest with me and since gazpacho is one of her favorite soups along with this intense heat in July, she decided to use them to make her ‘wow-factor’ version of this chilled Spanish tomato-vegetable soup. I inherited my ‘preserve, freeze, and/or can’ outlook from my mother, so not surprisingly, she froze most of this batch of soup to enjoy later. “No waste, no want!” I could easily say that this gazpacho could rival that of the culinary pros.
The color of this soup is seriously this beautiful shade of deep red, resulting from the vine-ripe tomatoes that she used. This radiant color and flavor cannot be achieved with those hard, juice-less, spongy pink things that you find in a grocery store. Also worth noting: the flavor intensifies as it chills in the refrigerator, preferably overnight.
My mother doesn’t use exact measurements, she’s an old-school, taste-as-you-go cook and she is a master at it. So I said that she had to give me a little help to be able to write down the recipe and post it here.
Gazpacho Ala Mama
6 cups chopped, vine-ripe, fresh tomatoes
2 large cucumbers, 1 peeled, 1 with peel left on, all seeds removed, sliced and cut into 1/4″ chunks
2 cups chopped celery, sliced and cut into 1/4″ chunks
1 cup Vidalia onion, sliced and cut into 1/4″ chunks
2 red peppers, stem and seeds removed, sliced and cut into 1/4″ chunks
1 yellow pepper, stem and seeds removed, sliced and cut into 1/4″ chunks
1 green pepper, stem and seeds removed, sliced and cut into 1/4″ chunks
6 cloves garlic, minced
1/3 cup vinegar: 1/2 of it balsamic vinegar and 1/2 of it red wine vinegar
2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1/2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
5 cups tomato juice (Campbell’s brand is recommended)
Mix everything together and chill overnight for the best marriage of flavors!