If you've been overindulging a bit lately, or slacking with working out because you'd rather be at the beach or doing something else fun and summery, then gazpacho is the perfect dinner. Its also the best thing both to cook and to eat when its as hot and disgusting as it has been on the east coast lately. Who wants to turn on the oven or heat up the grill when its 109 degrees outside? I tried, and it wasn't too pretty.
This recipe is inspired by one of my new favorite cooks- Ree Drummond. She has the most amazing blog called The Pioneer Woman Cooks, and a new cookbook out as well. She is so sassy and honest and hilarious, you have to read her blog: http://thepioneerwoman.com/cooking/. She also does really helpful frame by frame photos of every step as she cooks.
In the bowl of a food processor (you can use a blender too but it won't have quite the same texture), blitz together six cloves of garlic (I'm a garlic nut so obviously add as much or as little as you like), 1/2 a red onion, one large cucumber, six or seven large tomatoes, one zucchini, 1/2 a bottle of tomato juice, 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil, 1/8 cup red wine vinegar, 1/4 cup honey (depending on how sweet and ripe your tomatoes are), and six dashes Tabasco sauce.
Be careful not to overly blend the mixture- you're aiming for a slightly chunky look where you can still discern what vegetables are actually in it.
Pour the mixture into a large bowl, and add the kernels of two ears of cooked corn. Add salt and black pepper until it tastes right to you, and add a bit more tomato juice if you're going for a more soupy gazpacho. Slap on some plastic wrap and throw the whole thing into the fridge for a few hours to let all the flavors amalgamate and come together properly.
After the gazpacho has chilled, give it another big stir and check the seasonings again. Dish it out into big shallow bowls (or whatever you have on hand), and top with some sliced avocado, some grilled shrimp, a snipping of chives, a drizzle of olive oil, more salt and pepper - whatever you have the energy for. The gazpacho is equally delicious eaten straight from the fridge with no fanciness added. If you want to make a meal of it, serve with some crusty bread drizzled with olive oil and toasted until golden brown.