We can all agree that firing up the grill or switching on the oven can be downright unpleasant in this late summer heat. No matter how much we love our shish kebabs and burgers, some nights just beg for something more refreshing, like a cool, simple gazpacho. This week, try your hand at the deliciously creamy Cucumber Gazpacho from popular N.Y.C. restaurant Claudette.
"We wanted to have a very refreshing appetizer for such hot weather," explains chef Cedric Tovar. "Something light and Mediterranean, though not tomato-based. Cucumber gazpacho is the first thing that came to mind. We added mint, lemon, and yogurt to give it some body. Finished with a crunchy garnish of watermelon radishes and a drizzle of olive oil—I loved it instantly!” Read on below for the recipe.
2 large cucumbers, with seeds and skin, 1/4 cup finely diced (for garnish), the rest coarsely chopped
1 cup plain yogurt
3 tbsp fresh lemon juice
1/2 lemon zest (infuse with olive oil for garnish)
1/3 cup loosely packed dill
1/2 cup loosely packed mint leaves
1/4 cup olive oil, plus more for drizzling
Fresh ground black pepper
1 pinch of ground coriander
1/4 cup of watermelon radish finely diced (for garnish)
1. In a blender, combine the chopped cucumbers with the yogurt, lemon juice, dill, mint, and the 1/4 cup of olive oil. Blend until smooth. Season with salt and white pepper, pass through a strainer, cover and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight.
2. Season the soup again just before serving. Pour the soup into bowls. Garnish with the finely diced cucumber and radishes, and a drizzle of lemon zest infused olive oil. The olive oil should be infused with the zest just before serving for a light lemon flavor.