What to do when you have more cucumbers, tomatoes and basil growing than you can reasonably eat or give away? Find a way to freeze them of course! A few weeks back we were in the middle of an amazing tomato season which I’m sad to say is just about over now because of the Texas summer heat. Anyhow, I decided to make some gazpacho, a delicious cold summer soup. I didn’t feel like going to the store for extra ingredients so I looked around for a recipe that mostly relied on the things I had in the garden. I ended up adapting a gazpacho recipe from The Complete Book of Small Batch Preserving.
Garden fresh vegetables
My ingredients ended up being:
- Peeled and seeded cucumbers
- Peeled and seeded tomatoes (using the boiling water method of peeling tomatoes)
- Two jalapeños
- About 1.5 cups of cubed bakery bread (baked by the grocery store, not me)
- Some olive oil
- Fresh ground salt and pepper to taste
- Fresh basil
In the second batch I made, I added some white onion to change the flavor a bit. I liked both varieties.
Peel and seed cucumbers
Combine cucumbers and peppers (and onion if you’re using it) in a food processor
Use boiling water method to peel tomatoes. First you slice their skin and then dunk them in boiling water for about 30 – 45 seconds followed with an ice bath.
Add peeled and seeded tomatoes to the food processor and combine.
Add bread to food processor and combine.
At the end, add olive oil, salt, pepper and fresh basil to taste.
We then ate about half the batch and I froze the rest in a plastic container. A few days later I made another batch and froze it. Mmmm… garden vegetables.
Do you have a favorite gazpacho recipe I should try?
How our garden grows
Split pea soup
I have plans. Plans to have chickens. Some day. So right now I like to practice eating eggs in preparation. I want backyard chickens for the beautiful eggs they produce. Last week I made a tasty egg salad for dinner.
After hard boiling 5 eggs, I assembled thyme from my garden and fresh dill from the store.
Pretty brown cage free eggs
After shelling the eggs, I added some fresh cracked pepper, a sprinkling of salt, and the herbs.
Next, I used a fork to mash up the eggs with whole grain mustard and light mayonnaise. I also find that plain yogurt can be used for part of the mayonnaise if you want to cut fat or calories. I use mustard, mayo, and herbs to taste.
I like my egg salad on the chunky side so I stop mashing before it’s smooth.
We ate the egg salad with some gorgeous heirloom tomatoes.
To plate our dinner, I chopped romaine lettuce and topped it with heirloom tomato slices and chopped red onion and placed a scoop of egg salad on top. Delicious!