Friday, July 19, 2013

Soup #28 / Gazpacho with Scallops and Avocado


If you haven't yet read what happened the first time I tried to make this (yesterday), you should. Only then will you understand what gazpacho is NOT supposed to be like. Unless of course, you are a gazpacho connoisseur, in which case, you would already know that, and I hope this one is up to par. I'm super excited about this one because not only was it delicious, but I made it pretty much off the top of my head after reading too many recipes. I just let my hands do the chopping and my taste buds do the thinking. And the end result was, I think, my favorite summer soup yet!

What you will need: 
1/2 cup of chopped English cucumbers
1/2 cup chopped red onion
1/2 cup chopped bell pepper
3 large tomatoes seeded and chopped into 1/2"-1" pieces
2-3 large basil leaves, finely chopped
16 oz of tomato juice 
2 tbsp of sherry vinegar
1 tbs olive oil
1 dash of Siracha or other hot sauce
salt and pepper to taste
1 avocado, sliced/chopped
Scallops, pan seared or grilled (however you like them!)

How to make it:
In a medium bowl, stir together the cucumbers, red onion, bell pepper, tomatoes, and basil. Mix together. Add in the olive oil and sherry vinegar, Siracha, and some salt and pepper. Mix everything together until your veggies are completely coated. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let it sit in the refrigerator while the flavors marry for a few hours (we left ours over night). 

About an hour before you're ready to serve, add the tomato juice to your veggie bowl. Mix everything up well and chill again until you are ready to serve.  You may need to add a little more salt and pepper to taste. 

Ladle your soup into bowls and top with slices of avocado and then add in the scallops. Enjoy! 

The Verdict: SUCCESS!!! After the epic failure that was the first gazpacho batch, this was bound to be better. But thankfully, it was better than better. It was delicious. The scallops added just enough substance to it without being overly fishy or meaty. The veggies were flavorful and fresh and still crunchy. And while I'm not usually a fan of tomato juice, the broth was the perfect taste of summertime. 

What we would do differently:  MORE SCALLOPS! We only had about 6 fresh scallops that shrunk down a bit after we cooked them, and more would definitely have been awesome. Otherwise, I think I would have added a little bit of garlic, and maybe a splash more of each of the main flavors (sherry, siracha, and basil) before adding in the tomato juice. It was awesome just the way it was!