When I was in college I spent a summer as an intern in Milan working in the studio of one of my design heroes, Ettore Sottsass. It was a great summer, both for the work experience and the fun we had. I shared an apartment with several Spanish girls from Malaga, and we hosted gazpacho and sangria parties. Chilled gazpacho is refreshing, cool and tangy, the perfect food to make when the weather is unbearably hot. Thanks to my Spanish roommates, gazpacho is actually a recipe I learned to make a long time ago. Now that I live in Spain, I can buy yummy pre-made gazpacho at the grocery store. Still, I made some of my own today, with fresh tomatoes from the market, and it really is easy, healthy, and delicious. In Spain there are dozens of varieties of gazpacho, some are smoother, some have almonds, some are Andalusian style, some have a kick with bell peppers, I’ve even seen watermelon gazpacho! But I will give you the original recipe that I learned all those years ago in Milan, it has served me well.

INGREDIENTS:

5 large ripe tomatoes, washed and quartered

1 cucumber, peeled and cut into chunks

1/2 onion, peeled and cut into chunks

3 tablespoons olive oil

2 tablespoons white wine vinegar

1 slice of bread, toasted and torn into pieces

salt and pepper to taste

Blend all the ingredients together with a mixer and then chill in refrigerator before serving. I make my gazpacho slightly chunky, but that’s mainly because I use a hand mixer. Some of the gazpachos I buy are creamy and smoothly blended, more of a juice than a soup. In Spain, gazpacho is often served and drunk in a glass rather than with a soup bowl and spoon.

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