Alice Waters' Gazpacho Print Email

1 dried ancho chile, stemmed and soaked in warm water for 15 minutes
2 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
2 cups crustless crusty bread (French or Italian bread, crust removed)
5 pounds tomatoes, cut in half horizontally
1/4 cup olive oil
salt to taste
1/2 pound cherry tomatoes, halved
1 cucumber, peeled and diced
1/2 red onion, diced
handful each of chopped chervil and basil
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1/4 cup olive oil
salt and pepper to taste

In a mortar and pestle, pound the reconstituted ancho chile into a paste, then scrape out and set aside. Add the garlic and a pinch of salt to the mortar and pound into a paste. Soak the bread in cold water for 2 minutes, then squeeze out the water and add that to the garlic. Mash it all together until smooth. (Alternatively, you could do it in a food processor).

Grate the cut sides of the tomatoes on the medium holes of a box grater into a large bowl until only the skins are left; discard the skins. Stir in the bread paste and add the chile puree to taste (this allows you to control the spiciness). Add 1/4 cup of olive oil and salt to taste, then chill in the refrigerator.

In the meantime, mix together the remaining ingredients to create a relish. Divide the soup among bowls and top each with a generous spoonful of relish.

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