Last Sunday, I had this text exchange with my dad:
In case you don’t speak Dad, “cucs and toms” translates to cucumbers and tomatoes. Or, more specifically, garden fresh tomatoes and lemon cucumbers. No way I was going to pass up an offer like that.
4 hours later, I was unwrapping these beauties:
Insert Homer Simpson drooling sound effect here.
Perfectly ripe and still warm from the sun, I could not wait to get dinner started, with these babies as the featured players. Luckily for me, Shawn was a work that night and I was on my own for dinner.
See, the thing is, Shawn hates tomatoes. I KNOW. He hates tomatoes, and I married him anyway. Well, at least he has some other redeemable qualities
So, I had a night all to myself and a table full of homegrown cucs and toms. Too hot to cook. Gazpacho it is.
Cold, crisp tomato and cucumber soup. The best possible way to enjoy those fresh garden veggies. Garlic, fresh mint and a dash of cayenne pepper evens out the flavors, adding a bit of a bite to the sweet and smooth cucumber and tomato. A drizzle of lemon and a swirl of olive oil. This is summer in a bowl. You can’t help but take a deep breath and smile a bit sipping on this icy soup. Too good.
Cold roasted potatoes round out this meal perfectly. Just roast the potatoes in the morning or the night before when it’s cool enough to have the oven on (if that’s even feasible where you live; I feel for all of you in 100ºF+ weather. Stay hydrated my overheated friends). This soup calls out for garden fresh produce; it just wouldn’t be the same with grocery store tomatoes or cucumbers. You need the picked-ripe flavor to come punching through; the soup could be pretty bland with most mass-produced veggies. If you don’t have a garden (or a dad with a green thumb), your local farmer’s market selection will do just fine.
What’s your favorite summer cool down meal? THG
Tomato and Lemon Cucumber Gazpacho
2 lb. assorted tomatoes, roughly chopped
3 medium size lemon cucumbers, roughly chopped
3 garlic cloves, smashed
1/4 cup fresh mint, roughly chopped
1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
In a blender, puree tomatoes, lemon cucumbers, garlic and mint until completely broken down and frothy (this may need to be done in batches). In a fine mesh sieve, strain liquid into a large bowl. Discard solids. Whisk in lemon juice, cayenne pepper and sea salt to taste. Cover and refrigerate until completely chilled, at least one hour. Spoon into individual bowls and drizzle with olive oil. Serve cold.