Gazpacho

Ahhh, gazpacho. My favorite of all summer things. I apologize for all the tomato-heavy posts lately, but ‘tis the season, so to speak. When living in the Northeastern United States, I always looked forward the produce output of August. What other time of year can you find plump, fire-engine red tomatoes with a flavor so intense it (almost) makes you sad for cooler temps?  This being my first year in Barcelona, I’m not sure what I can really expect from the produce season. Maybe the novelty of being able to get delicious summer fruits later in the year will wear off, but then again, I seriously doubt that.

Gazpacho can be a personal, creative dish depending on your mood or whatever ingredients you happen to have at hand. I like mine as simple as can be: tomato, garlic, bread and olive oil. However, I still have half a watermelon in my fridge, so I might get creative this weekend…

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Tomato Salsa and Guacamole

The one thing we always try have in our refrigerator at almost any given moment is fresh, homemade salsa. We usually make it pretty chunky and really spicy. However, the one thing we have a hard time finding in Spain at our local grocery store are jalapenos. The only place we’ve found them is at La Boqueria, so we have been substituting in habaneras or cayenne peppers when we can find them instead. Let me tell you, they’re not kidding around. However, as true and blue jalapeno fans we’ve been, we’re becoming converts to the habanero.

Some nights after a super long day, we simply don’t want to cook much of anything. Instead of ordering take away or delivery pizza we will go into the fridge and see what we’ve got. It’s not technically a smorgasbord – we prefer the phrase “hodge-podge.” Those are the nights when you’re always glad to have fresh salsa in the fridge.  The same goes for avocados. You can always make guac when you’re making salsa with one extra ingredient.

This recipe makes a lot of salsa, but not enough to freeze or can. Then again, there can never be enough salsa in our house.

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Carrot Soup and Stuffed Tomatoes

My husband and I used to have a system in our house where we would try to eat one vegetarian, one vegan, and one fish dish a week. This way, we were reducing our meat consumption each week by just a bit. When we started prepping for our move overseas, any kind of routine became pretty difficult and we sort of lost track of our old system. As we’re settling into a routine again, its time to get back to business, and I figured this was a good week to start.

I had eaten some Crema de Zanahoria at a local favorite restaurant recently and thought to myself, “there is no way I can’t make this at home.” After making a point to revisit the Fannie Farmer Cookbook this week, I went to do some recipe digging and as fate would have it, I found that it included a quite tasty-sounding recipe for carrot soup. I couldn’t be happier with the results; as Davis said, “this one is going into heavy rotation.”

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