Jamie says: I had a lot of energy today. (And that’s without any caffeine.) I went on a bike ride with my Dad and then went on a fast run. I haven’t had a good run like that in a while. It felt so good. Oh, and I also had a dance party to my new favorite song.
When lunch time grew near, I thought of the gazpacho recipe I’ve been wanting to try (Easy Gazpacho, Health magazine, July/August 2007). Gazpacho is a cold, tomato-based soup made with raw vegetables. I used the recipe as a guide but made it my own. My version is:
It was so delicious! Nice and cold. So refreshing! Think of it as a salsa-like soup.
Gazpacho with Chili Shrimp and Homemade Croutons
- 1 small yellow onion
- 1 green bell pepper
- 1 cucumber
- 4 vine-ripened tomatoes
- 1 1/2 cups plus 4 sprigs fresh cilantro
- 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil, divided
- 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar (use less for a lighter red color soup base if desired)
- 1/4 tsp salt
- dash freshly ground pepper
- 11 fl oz (2 cans) 100% vegetable juice (V8 Original)
- 1/2 baton multigrain bread (Publix Bakery)
- dash sea salt
- 24 peeled, deveined, cooked shrimp without tail
- 1 lemon
- 1/4 tsp chili powder
- Remove skin and cut ends off onion; discard. Chop onion. Stand pepper, stem up, on a cutting board. Cut into four pieces; discard stem with seeds; remove membranes. Chop bell pepper. Peel and chop cucumber. Slice top off tomato and discard. Cut tomato in half. Scoop out seeds and insides; discard. Chop remaining outer part of tomato. Cut stems off cilantro (leave the stems near the leaves on). Place chopped onion, bell pepper, cucumber, tomato, and 1 1/2 cups cilantro in a bowl. Add 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt, and freshly ground pepper. Stir.
- Pour 2/3 of mixture into a blender. Add tomato juice. Blend. Pour blended mixture into bowl with remaining 1/3 of mixture. Stir. Cover and refrigerate for at least one hour. (In a time crunch? Put the bowl in the freezer for 25 minutes.)
- Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350°F. Cut bread into cubes. Place in a metal baking pan. Drizzle reserved 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil on top. Sprinkle with sea salt and add a dash of freshly ground pepper. Toss to coat. Bake for 15 minutes.
- Toss shrimp with chili powder. Juice lemon. Add juice to shrimp. Refrigerate.
- Divide soup into bowls. Top with shrimp, croutons, and a sprig of cilantro. Enjoy!
- Nutrition note: Just getting your veggies at dinner? Try a vegetable-rich soup at lunch, like this gazpacho, to increase your veggie intake. Then you’ll have them on board for two meals of the day.