July 20, 2007


I am making a delicious and refreshing Spanish soup called Gazpacho, which is made from fresh home grown Tomatoes from my own veggie patch for Meeta from "What's for lunch honey" blog's Monthly Mingle with the theme of "Earth food" this month. Thanks for choosing this wonderful theme Meeta!:)

Earth Food:
What's Earth Food? It is as simple as growing your own vegetables, WITHOUT using the boosters and artificial means like hormones to grow them bigger and "better looking" vegetables.It's about encouraging the farmers to grow more Organic food and encouraging them by buying from the Farmer's market,thus helping them and us in the process of reducing the negative effects of toxic chemicals in our food and environment and also experimenting with "Super foods" which are full of healthy nutrients.Sounds great,huh?:))
There are several things we can do at home to help conserve Energy and water as well:
Even though these sounds like little things now,in the long run,it is big deal to save the Earth and make it a better place to live for out future generation.Here are some;
Turn off appliances and lights when you leave the room.
Use less water,only as much as you need it to water the plants,washing dishes etc..
Take quick showers instead of using Bathtubs and watering the plants only when they need it.Keep the lawn clean off of any weeds which causes allergy.
Keep your appliances up to date so they don't use more Energy than necessary.
Use and re use bags,do not buy too many packaged food items or disposables.
Recycle paper like printer paper, newspapers, mail, etc., plastic, glass bottles, cardboard, and aluminum cans.
Replace the regular bulbs with energy-efficient fluorescent bulbs.
Here are some links to read and learn here, here, and here.
Now coming to the recipe;
I thought what is more appropriate than this Spanish/Portuguese style Gazpacho soup with my own additions for an Earth Food theme! I used Tomatoes that are home grown with no chemicals and any added boosters,so they are smaller and as fresh as you can get along with other vegetables.To make it even better candidate for Earth food,they are not cooked at all,so all the nutrients are intact and preserved to make it as healthy and tasty as you can imagine!!

Spanish style Gazpacho:

Gazpacho is a cold refreshing soup,perfect for hot Summer days when you get many garden fresh summer vegetables and you don't want to slog in front of the hot stove.Make sure to use fresh vegetables for this soup and chill overnight to seep in the flavors.It's the most delicious to eat on it's own or with a piece chunky bread.
Although, main ingredient is Tomatoes for this soup,there are many variations of the same dish.So feel free to add any vegetables you like.You can garnish with hard boiled Eggs as well just before you serve for a touch of Protein!

Here they are! Fresh off the plants from my garden: Plum Tomatoes,Pear Tomatoes and Cherry Tomatoes:

How I made Gazpacho:
8-12 or as many you want ripe tomatoes any kind you like,chopped.I added all those you see up there to make it colorful,1 red sweet onion,finely chopped,1 cucumber,peel,seed and chop.1 Carrot,grated or cubed small,1 Yellow or red or green bell pepper,cubed,1 celery chopped,1 tbsp Mint leaves,finely chopped,2 Tbsp chopped fresh parsley,2 Tbsp chopped fresh chives, 1tbsp Cilantro,2 garlic, minced,1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce,1 tbsp Olive oil,1 JalapeƱo,minced or any hot sauce you like, 1 tbsp Balsamic Vinegar,1/2 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice,1 tsp sugar,Salt and pepper to taste.
Mix all these in big glass jar with fitted lid and chill for 6hrs or overnight.Serve in a bowl with crusty bread or 1/2 cup cooked rice for a refreshing lunch!:)
(You can also blend these coarsely as well if some of you lazy bums don't want to chop all these veggies!!:D)

Bottled up and ready to chill!:))

My Gazpacho jar ready to pose on my backyard deck!:D YUP! There you see my veggie patch on your right on the ground where all the Summer magic happens and in the far side,you see my neighbor's beautiful flowering trees.

There they are again! On the plants as they were just before I plucked them!:))

So that's it this week, have a great weekend.We really can save the Earth one person at a time! Hope you at least try, recycle today!!:)


Lata said...

Now, that's a simple and comforting dish. And kudos to your garden, it's amazing.

Plants always die at my place, don't know why. I didn't even attempt to grow this time.

Coffee said...

OK!!! I will be a lazy bum for this one and blend it all together ;)

What lovely plants you have Asha! Thats tomato plant looks awesome!

FH said...

Thanks Lata!:)
I know gardening is pretty hard task,have to maintain the soil and watering and all that.Not easy,ground is full of hard clay soil but we have created a above the ground patch,so they grows very well there!:)
Have a great weekend.

Mishmash ! said...

the pics itself is so soothing and refreshing...can imagine how proud you must be when using your own veggies....in my case, it hurts my heartsm everytime i snip off some leaves from my herbs :P


FH said...

LOL! Coffee,you can certainly use the blender but don't make a pates ,just a light blend.
Plants are growing very well,I have surplus of Tomatoes!:))

Hahaha!!Shn, I understand the feeling but got to pluck them orelse they start rotting!:)
Enjoy the Gazpacho and Have a great weekend.

Jyothi said...

Hi Asha! really authentic. I love the your garden and that tomato plants are very beautiful. You are very lucky dear.

KellytheCulinarian said...

Mmmm, 'tis the season for gazpacho.

Priyanka said...

You came up with such a simple yet delicious dish. ANd i sooooo..... love the pictures of your tomatoes and your plants too...look very colorful and pretty... feel like plucking them off rite there and eating them.

Richa said...

nice garden vegs. my tomatoes are a little on the smaller side as well, but looking at them everyday is a JOY :) they are still green, shud be able to harvest them within a week i think, do you pluck them after they r all ripened or when still greenish?
gazpacho is a good way to use all those veg.

Unknown said...

Your garden looks good :)
Preparing a dish out of veggies grown in our own garden gives some sort of satisfaction!
Great recipe with a lovely pic!!

Anonymous said...

Simple, enticing , cold soup on a warm summer day... great pics and comforting recipe ashakka

FH said...

Thanks Jyoti! I was afraid they were all dried up when I came back from vacation but I think it rained one or two days,they survived!:)

It is Kelly.It feels so good to have a chilled soup on a hot day!:)

Priyanka,that's I do with those Cherry and Pear Tomatoes!:D
They are so juicy.Hope you try Gazpacho:)

FH said...

Richa,Tomatoes are best plucked when they are vine ripe as they say.They get really juicy and sweet.If I want them little tangy for dals,then I pick them when still little at the stems.For Gazpacho,ripe ones are best.Wait until you get red Tomatoes!:)

Thanks Cinnamon.It does feel so great.I eat half of them before they go into the dishes!:))

sra said...

Such beauties those tomatoes are! I don't even have a balcony in my apartment so have a couple of plants in pots which I can view from my window!

Sia said...

oh wow!!! thats one big booty of tomatoes u have:) care to send some ashakka? we have got flood warning this weekend. imagine all my so called gardening:( may be next year!!!
gazpacho is my fav summer soup. well, its not still summer here so i am busy making all hot soups:) will wait for few more days to make this:)

Meeta K. Wolff said...

Asha, a lovely post and I really thank you for taking part. This was a spectacular dish and those tomatoes look so lovely. All that love and care really did make a great harvest!

Sharmi said...

hey Asha, all those beauties are from your garden???? Awesome. you can be so proud of them!! and the Gazpacho looks great.

Seema Bhat said...

Ashakka, nimma veggie garden looks gorgeous. Tomatoes are already ripe? so soon. Nice nice,. Pear tomatoes look so good. Nan garden alli kuda full chakkarpe(cucember), cherry tomatoes and big boy tomatoes yella thumba agtha ide but its still raw...ripe agilla innu. Yours looks colorful. Gazpacho now I gottu try this Ashakka. Thumba chennag kanatte.

FH said...

Thank you Dee.It was really good.Tastes better after a day in the fridge!:)

Sups,I have so many Tomatoes piling up on my counter,wish I could send it to you! Sorry about your garden,UK has some weird weather really.Enjoy the hot soups right now!:))

FH said...

Hi Meeta,you are welcome.I enjoyed typing this post.Gazpacho is so refreshing for this hot weather,didn't mind at all.Garden is thriving,it's really a joy for the soul!:))

Yes madam Sharmi.I am getting good harvest this year bcos of all the heat.I probably get for few more weeks and then no more!:))Enjoy the Gazpacho:)

FH said...

Seema,hoda varsha naanu Big boy hakidde,hannu tumba sweet agirutte.But it grew soo huge in my veggie patch,it took over all other plants! So this year I planted Plum,Pear and cherry.They are giving me a bounty.
Innu swalpa weeks adre ningu bekadashtu Tomato sigutte Gazpachoge!:))
Cucumber plant has given me about 5 so far.I love how good it feels to eat them so fresh.E varsha illi tumba bisilu,adakke bega hannagutte.Enjoy.Post the pictures when you get them:)

Tee said...

Gazpacho looks inviting! I have never tried it before...so this is going down in my long list :) The tomatoes from your garden are so gorgeous!!!
I agree with you on saving water...especially after coming to US, i realized that we tend to use too much water and waste a lot.

FH said...

Tee,it's almost like Salsa but with Worcestershire sauce,vinegar etc,tastes very refreshing ,try it!:)
Yeah! We do waste water without knowing! If it doesn't rain here for more than 2 weeks ,they restrict us from watering the plants and lawns etc too.Good to be little kanjoos with precious water,specially in summer!:D

Anonymous said...

Asha, those tomatoes look so pretty.


A, mama of twins said...

Thumba channagiyede Asha! Nannige "green thumb" illa adike naanu farmer's marketige hogathayiddinee!

Ok, it takes me forever to type kannada but I had to!

lovely soup and tomatoes.

Lakshmi said...

Ashaji, Lovely Recipe. Color is so inviting. Olle garden madidira. Kudos to ur garden.

Viji said...

Quite informative post Asha. Nice to see the garden fresh veggies. When I get a chance will follow it. The Gazpacho is refreshing with the fresh goodies. Viji

Manasi said...

Nice!! u do have a green thumb!!! I am no good @ that!!! And.. I will be a lzy bum when I make this ;)

J said...

Do you have to make me jealous of your garden post after post?? I love your plants!! :)

Kajal said...

My mom love gardening......I also love but never try for that. Great Tomato looks lovely. Gazpacho looks delicious.:)

Raaga said...

Lovely... I must try this.

Roopa said...

wow that looks yummy! Asha nimma garden nodi thumba santosh vayithu. they looks so fabulous. wow i think i light have felt like plucking those beauties.

FH said...

Thank you Mamatha.Once they start giving fruit,it gives unlimited Tomatoes for few weeks!:D

LOL! Archana, same problem here with Kannada too!
Ondondu sala kannada words nenapige barodilla.Matte Englishnalli baribekagutte!;D
Enjoy the soup.Farmer's markets have fresh tomatoes too,almost as good as homegrown!

Hi TM,thanks girl.Swalpa kashta pattu belesabeku firstu.Amele bekadashtu hannugalu siguttave!:)
Soup madi nodi.Almost like Salsa but with additional sauces and herbs:)

FH said...

Thank you Viji.Garden fresh veggies are the best for this soup,really refreshing.Hope you try the soup!:))

LOL!!! Manasi,I knew I get some lazy bums who say "But I don't want to chop"!;D You and Coffee blast them in the blender!! Don't make a paste out of it though!
Arvind prepares the soil first and then I plant and take care of them,working well so far!:)

Hahaha!! J, a big post on the garden plants is coming at FH next month and that would be my entry to Summer garden 2007! Then you don't see them anymore,probably the end harvest next month anyway!:))
Have a great weekend.I am thinking of Appliances to include in one of the posts,can't think of any ,let's see!:)

FH said...

Thanks Kajal,try the Gazpacho!:))
My mum always planted Papaya trees everywhere we moved!;D
We often moved to different cities bcos of my dad's job,she would immediately would plant many of veg and fruit plants!:)

Do try Raaga.Make sure to use fresh crunchy juicy veggies! Enjoy.

Roopa,as soon as we came to this house,we made this above ground patch about 12'by 6' and it has been the best thing we ever did! Ground is too hard tp plant directly.Hard work is paying off!:)) I love those Pear Tomatoes,so juicy.I eat half of those just off of the branches!:D

SeeC said...

I appreciate your Energy saving tips. Our simple steps make a lot of difference to the environment. A special Thanks for sharing this info.

Your plants and your dishes...i really dont know what to say. Excellent Asha.

FH said...

I learned a lot from that list too Seec.It does help if we try little bit harder and not take everything we have for granted!:))
Enjoy the Gazpacho.

bha said...

The plants are lovely and garden is pretty. the dish seems delicious

Anonymous said...

I loved your backyard garden and the Gazpacho recipe seems so simple!Thanks.You are amazing

deena said...

my god Asha those tomatoes look awesome..dont even need to cook them they look so fresh !!

USHA said...

Hi Ashaji,

Gazpacho ....i first wondered after reading the name..but after reading the ingredients seems to be very familiar...now i got hope that we can even try this:))

oh so itis Spanish soup...that a great piece of information too...more over what the special is it is made with your own garden goodies...thats really a joy na...

FH said...

Thank you Bha!:) Weather is good for Tomatoes this year.

You are welcome Madhuli.I am loving it too!:)

FH said...

Deena,you are so right!:)
I eat half of them right out of the plants before even they reach the kitchen!:D

Usha,that's true.There is nothing like fresh vegetables for salads and cooking.Hope you try Gazpacho,easy!:))

Susan from Food Blogga said...

Excellent tips, Asha. And your photos are so inspiring! If you ever need anyone to water your garden while you're away, just call me. You wouldn't have to pay me; a few handfuls of those luscious tomatoes would suffice. ;)

krystyna said...

Hi Asha!
Vegetables that are home grown with no chemicals and any added boosters are the best for health. Your work is hart but satisfaction.. wow. In Poland I had a little garden with vege and herbs, and fruit trees.
Thanks for this wonderful post!

Meena Shankar said...

Lovely plants Asha!!! They look so colourful ever for a nice sunny weather...You reaally have a green thumb!!!
Mathe, henge naditha idhe nimma magala driving classes?? Seeing her driving, you must be feeling "God!! This is MY Daughter!!:)" Its just too nice to see our kids growing alva?? I have a 3 and a half yr old cute boy 'Karthik' and Can't imagine how he became so big!!!

FH said...

Thanks Susan!
I will call you and you can have more than just Tomatoes!!:D
It is a joy to take care of those plants.Pity it only lasts two more months!So sorry I missed sending you my entry for your event.I came to know that you are hosting WHB on the last day!:)

FH said...

Hi Krystyna,it is hard work at first and then it gets easier.Every Fall when we clean up that patch,we add some leaves etc to enrich it the whole Winter and Spring,so the soil will be ready and healthy for in Summer!:)

Meena, nenne driving instructor jote eradu gante drivege hogiddalu.Innu eradu varadolage testge karedukondu hogabeku.Paasadre car tegedukodabeku! Then we can have mini heart attacks every time she drives alone to school!;D
They grow up so fast, you cannot believe it and become so mature!!MY GOD!It's good in a way,I don't have to drive them around forever!:)
Hugs to Karthik,he is still a baby. Enjoy every moment!:))

Suganya said...

This is so refreshing......Those plants look good... Great earth recipe....

Anonymous said...

Hi Asha, I'm drooling at your delicious soup, love gazpacho with a dollop of yogurt on top! Your garden is looking beautiful :)

Sig said...

Wow, what a nice crop you have Asha... it must be wonderful just plucking stuff out of your garden and cooking it... me, too lazy to do that... but I can drool right? :D

FH said...

Thank you Sukanya.Doing my bit for Earth!:))

Thank you Linda.Yeah! Garden really growing well,we had some rain too this week.What I really want is to get some Ridge gourds!Plants have grown but haven't progressing much with the fruit.Will see,got one more month!:)) Enjoy.

Yes Madam,you can drool you lazy bum!;D
Gardening is hard work,need lot of time to devote at first,so I don't blame ya,you are a busy bee!:)

Suma Gandlur said...

Really simple dish,
What a beautiful bounty, Asha. Especially the yellow pear shaped tomatoes. I haven't seen them yet. anywhere.

FH said...

Hi Suma.I know you don't get that in the grocery,got to get plants or seeds.I love the shape and they are very sweet too.I am making lot of salads these days!:)
Try Gazpacho,it's tasty too.

Navita (Gupta) Hakim said...

yum...looks good n i love the garden more...

FH said...

Thanks Navita. Yeah! Every Summer I get so many veggies, it's a joy to cook with them! :))