Tomato and Red Pepper Gazpacho with Buffalo Mozzarella
You can’t beat a delicious chilled fresh gazpacho. OK, so I know it has been done many times and a few of you might click away from this recipe, but I love gazpacho, so here it is in all its glory and deliciousness.
I think this soup should be made in bucket loads; it should be on tap in the fridge and be served at least twice a day! It’s not only packed with natural goodness, it’s filling, thirst-quenching and tasty, and simply just good for the soul.
This recipe shouts holiday in the sun to me. Sun-ripened tomatoes (especially the heirloom ones that come in all colours) and fresh buffalo mozzarella both contribute to this wonderful recipe, but the true stars are the sautéed red peppers. The sautéing brings out their sweetness and provides real depth of flavour to an otherwise potentially boring old gazpacho recipe.
Ingredients & Method
For the Gazpachio
- 10 very ripe plum tomatoes, chopped
- 10 very ripe beef tomatoes, chopped
- 1 litre tomato juice
- 1 cucumber, skin on and seeds removed, chopped
- a bunch of fresh basil, roughly torn
- a large sprig of fresh thyme
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 tablespoons sherry vinegar
- 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- 50ml olive oil
- 2 red peppers, seeded and cut into large dice
- 2 shallots, sliced
- 3 cloves garlic, sliced
- 1 tablespoon tomato purée
- sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper
- 500g heirloom tomatoes, sliced
- 2 balls of buffalo mozzarella
- 25ml extra virgin olive oil
Prepare the gazpacho. This is a two-day process, so on day one, place the chopped tomatoes, tomato juice, cucumber, basil, thyme, bay leaf and both vinegars in a large container.
Heat the oil in a non-stick frying pan over a medium heat, then add the red peppers, shallots, garlic and salt and pepper and sauté for 6–8 minutes, until tender and soft, being careful not to let them colour too much. Stir in the tomato purée during the last minute of the cooking time.
Remove from the heat, add the sautéed vegetables to the chopped tomato mixture and season generously with salt and pepper, mixing well. Cover and refrigerate for 12 hours.
The following day, remove the thyme and bay leaf, then blend the gazpacho mixture until smooth. Pass it through a fine sieve, adjust the seasoning to taste and then chill for 2 hours before serving.
To serve, ladle the gazpacho into chilled bowls and divide the sliced tomatoes between the bowls. Rip the mozzarella into small pieces, then divide it between the bowls. Season with salt and pepper, then drizzle over the olive oil and serve.