Watermelon Gazpacho

It is too hot to eat something hot. When your appetite suddenly goes, and all you feel like is grazing on fruit and cold things from the fridge, a soup like this is a perfect meal/snack.  I love cold foods that are also spicy, like leftover curry, salsa and this unusual pairing of sweet watermelon, and savory tomatoes and the wonderful trinity of jalapeño, lime and cilantro running all through it. You get all the satisfying chopping in the preparation, but with none of the hassle of searing, braising, sauteing etc. I was suspicious of the watermelon tomato combo at first. I found a version of this recipe in a raw food cookbook, a sort of glamorization of the raw food movement that seemed to say “eat raw food and you will look as good as the authors of this cookbook,” a then hot couple, who actually broke up on the eve of the book launch. Note to self: meeting, moving in, and starting a business with a guy in the same year, is probably not a good idea. However, I have had dinner at the restaurant in question many years ago, and I still remember how good the food was, if pricy. I had a lavender blueberry sundae and chocolate cake that were as good as any dessert I’ve ever had, and it was completely vegan and raw. hmm. Anyway, I trust the recipes. They might seem strange at times, but they’re reliably good. Unlike a lot of raw food recipes, that may have been written from a nutritionist perspective for dieters, this recipe comes from obsessive foodie authors/chefs who dared to push the envelope on what to expect from plant-based cooking.

Watermelon Gazpacho

servings: 3-4

Ingredients

  • 4 cups watermelon
  • 2 medium tomatoes
  • 1/2 cucumber
  • 1/2 green bell pepper
  • 1 scallion
  • 1/2 seeded, minced jalapeno
  • 1 teaspoon grated ginger
  • juice of a lime
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • black pepper
  • cilantro

Preparation

Pulse about 1 cup of watermelon in a food processor until it reaches pulp consistency. Meanwhile, dice cucumber, tomatoes, scallion, remaining watermelon, jalapeno and green pepper. Add to the watermelon pulp. Add lime juice, salt, pepper, grated ginger and a handful of chopped cilantro. Best if left to chill and combine for a few hours before serving.

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