Gazpacho with Vegetable garnishes & Lemon Grilled Shrimp

boozy-gazpacho-and-tequila-guacamole-iii

Americans have more food to eat than any other people and more diets to keep them from eating it
Yogi Berra quotes

What a surprise 70º weather before the cold rolls in once again, but hey it is January so some cold is to be expected after all. For today a chilled gazpacho is on the menu and greatly adapted from Jamie Oliver…I wanted to attach a video link, but the whole video shows up and takes up too much of my space so I suggest looking at his video on YouTube the one in Andalucia, Spain.

Gazpacho can be very adaptable and even include grilled shrimp or scallops for a nice appetizer with a good margarita, red or white wine.  So with quite the assortment of veggies to work with I’m sure we will enjoy the summer favorite with a nice platter of Spanish shrimp cazuelitas, cold cuts and cheeses for a mini tapas  dinner.

Hardly a lot of work if you use a food processor to make the basic gazpacho and then chop extra vegetables for garnish, season with salt, pepper and a pinch or two of smoked paprika.  A splash of good tequila makes it extra special.  Perk that gazpacho up with 1/2 cup Zing Zang’s Bloody Mary mix, optional of course.

I soaked 2 crusty French rolls in 6 ounces of EVOO and 4 large cloves of smashed garlic for about 30 minutes, cut up 1+1/2 pounds of tomatoes and 1/2 half large English cucumber, peeled.  I had a bag of small colored peppers and used about 6 chunked up…Start by puréeing  the tomatoes, cucs and peppers in the processor, pulse for a minute or so, you will see tiny bits… at this point you can choose to strain them for seeds and skins, I did that today.  Toss the olive oil and garlic soaked bread into the processor add 3 teaspoons balsamic or red wine vinegar, more to taste process for a couple of minutes add the strained tomatoes, process.  If you want a thinner gazpacho you can add water, but an 11 ounce can of spicy or low sodium V8 juice and of course the Zing Zang’s will also thin it a bit otherwise add a little water.

Seriously garnish with extra veggies, croutons if you wish and wedges of fresh lime..hot sauce optional.

Wonderful dinner and we enjoyed the moment of spring in January!