Gazpacho is the ideal late summer cuisine—a chilled soup that is spicy, hearty and just the shade of autumn leaves. This was my first gazpacho attempt, and I wanted to find a recipe for gazpacho that would allow me to use Stoneridge dried cherries because Stoneridge Orchards also makes a chocolate dipped cherry that I thought would tie in as a delicious dessert. That recipe did not exist, until now….
I highly recommend allowing the gazpacho to rest in the fridge for up to a day before eating—if you try sooner, the acerbic flavor of the red onion and garlic won’t have tempered into the other flavors and it will have too much bite. But, what you will.
Adapted from Food and Wine
2 lb tomatoes, cored and chopped
½ lb dried Stoneridge cherries
1 small poblano pepper, chopped
1 cup panko bread crumbs
½ cup chopped red onion
¼ cup red wine vinegar (with a splash of real red wine)
4 garlic cloves, chopped
½ cup plus 1/3 cup olive oil
Kosher salt and pepper
1 cup basil leaves
2 sliver anchovy fillets, chopped pistachios and goat cheese for the topping
Toss the tomatoes with the cherries, pepper, bread crumbs, onion, vinegar, garlic and ½ cup of olive oil. Give a generous pinch of salt and pepper. Let stand at room temperature, covered, for 2 hours. Then add anchovies and puree the stuff in batches, transfer to the fridge, covered, and let rest overnight.
Now you make the tasty basil oil garnish. Blanch the basil in a simmering bath of hot water for 1 minute. Drain and squeeze out the extra water. Puree the basil with 1/3 cup olive oil, and strain into a separate container. Serve the soup cold with the garnishes, a bit of oil, and I think it is delicious with buckwheat toast.