A rare treat - my friend Eileen came for dinner and a card game (klabberjass). More often, we meet for lunch, so this was nicer, from my perspective anyway, because it lasted longer. Plus, we can’t play cards in a restaurant – at least not the one we usually frequent.
I served one of my favorite hot day dinners – gazpacho. Every time I make it I think of Woman on the Edge of a Nervous Breakdown, a very funny movie, in which gazpacho plays a major role.
Gazpacho – an excellent hot day dinner
1 smallish loaf of crusty bread
2 cloves garlic, sliced
2 large tomatoes, peeled
1 large cucumber, peeled and chopped
1 green and 1 red pepper, chopped
1 purple onion
one big clove of garlic
26 oz can of plum tomatoes
¼ cup olive oil
1/3 cup red wine vinegar
1/8 tsp Tabasco sauce (oddly, I didn’t have any, and so used Vietnamese hot sauce)
bunch of chopped chives
First, make the croutons by cutting the bread into one inch cubes. Heat the oil in a skillet and sauté the garlic. When the garlic is translucent and just beginning to brown, remove it and set it aside. Sauté the bread chunks until browned in all sides, adding more oil as necessary. Set them aside, with the garlic mixed in.
As you chop the vegetables, put half the tomatoes, half the cucumber, half the peppers, and half the onion in separate bowls. Put the other half in the blender, along with the clove of garlic. Add the can of tomatoes and puree the whole thing. Transfer to a large bowl, and then add the vinegar, ¼ cup olive oil, Tabasco, salt and pepper. You won’t need much salt, as the canned tomatoes are already salty. Garnish with the chopped chives.