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the horror vacui

Archive for the month “May, 2011”

Gazpacho mi casa

Earlier this week I was in the mood to cook.  I also was craving one of my favorite restaurants, Jaleo.   Thus, I decided the perfect remedy would be to recreate a little Jaleo in my own house. 

The Washington Post published José Andrés Gazpacho recipe and I discovered this about a year ago.  It is to die for!  I munched on olives from the Harris Teeter olive bar while I chopped and blended this cold Spanish soup.  Oh oh and since it’s mostly veggies its supurb for people watching their figure!

First, I peeled and sliced a cucumber, quartered 10 plum tomatoes, and diced a bell pepper.

 

Since I do not own a food processor (Mother’s Day gift idea?  hint hint!)  I used my trust blender I purchased from CVS in my single days.  I actually blended things in two batches to avoid decorating my kitchen with plum tomatoes.

Throw in some minced garlic, salt, quarter cup of water, and sherry vinegar.  If you are like me and dont have sherry vinegar, use 3 parts cooking sherry to one part vinegar and it tastes just fine. 

 

Blend blend blend!  This is also when baby girl starts screaming.  This is also when you add 3/4 cup of olive oil to the blending veggies, after you comfort your screaming child of course. 

 

When every last piece has been blended together, pour mixture through a strainer.  Or if you are lazy, just leave it.  The taste is the same but the texture IS more pleasing when you mesh it through a strainer.  Then place in the fridge.  Gazpacho is the BEST when it is cold cold cold.

Now onto the garnish!

 

Slice cherry tomatoes in half and cut cucumber in chunks.  Cut the pearl onions in quarters, and then separate each piece.  PLEASE do this unless you really really like onion.  I made the mistake of not and ate an entire piece of quartered pearl onion.  Very thankful the hubbs was not home.  Snip chives into one inch pieces.  These chives are from my own garden I am so tickled to say! 

The bread is the best part in this entire dish, but that’s probably because I am a carbaholic.  Brown a slice of very nice baguette in hot olive oil.  After it cools, break it into little chunks.  You could also buy unflavored croutons.

 

Assemble garnish in the bottom of a bowl.  This is where my creativity comes to a screaching halt.  I need a class in presentation of food.  I really have no motiviation though as at this point the hubbs is usually like “just give it to me! i’m starving woman!”

 

Spoon the gazpacho over your garnish and serve!  (At Jaleo, they bring out your shallow bowl with the garnish decorated neatly at the bottom, and pour your gazpacho at the table.)

 

When at Jaleo, I always order their signature Sangria.  The best drink ever created!  I didn’t feel like buying or making sangria on this particular night, so I did some research and found that sparkling wines pair well with Gazpacho.  My Prosecco was perfect with the gazpacho!  Although in retrospect, I should have purchased a bottle of Cava to keep in the Spanish spirit…

Hell-ish Texas Sun

Last week for Easter service I was wishing I had one of those big hats worn at the Royal wedding.  Victoria Beckham’s would have done the trick.  You see last Saturday I pulled the dumbest stunt ever at my parents house in Texas.

I was trying desperately to transform my pasty white skin to any other color.  I had pushed a pair of sun glasses up on top of my head while laying outside.  Six minutes later (SIX.  Promise.)  it felt like someone had smacked me along my hairline.  The  sun through the sun glasses had made three huge welts on my forehead!  It looked like I had pressed my forehead up against a jail cell.  It felt awful and looked even worse.

Thankfully the beastly marks have totally disappeared a week later.  The experience served as a nice reminder of protecting my skin against the sun,  aka the wonders of sunscrean.  Also thank goodness for the wonders of concealer.

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