Wish Upon A Dish: We went Mediterranean last night

July 12, 2011

We went Mediterranean last night

About a week ago, Mary from One Perfect Bite posted a watermelon gazpacho recipe.

I have never tasted a gazpacho. Until a year ago, I was not a fan of fresh tomatoes. Mostly because unless you grow your own, they are flavorless and hard...yuck.

I would eat them with a fresh mozzarella salad and basil, but the majority of the ones I grew in my garden always ended up in a sauce. I just didn't appreciate a good fresh tomato.

Last year I made a promise to eat as many fresh tomatoes as I could get my hands on. They were just too good nutrition-wise to not eat them.

Now, one year later, I absolutely love tomatoes, and can't get enough. Grapes being my favs by far, but I am trying to grow heirlooms as well as yellow grape tomatoes.
While I wait patiently for them to ripen, I thought this recipe would be a good introduction to gazpacho.

We both love watermelon, but I wasn't sure how The Nudge would react when I told him I was making a watermelon gazpacho. I have to say, I was pleasantly surprised at his total acceptance to having it for dinner.

I love that it is all done in the processor or blender. A perfect dish for a warm summer night.

If you want it with texture, use the processor, a completely smooth one requires the use of a blender. I will use the blender and top it with diced cucumber, feta cheese and since I do not like cilantro, fresh chervil from my garden.

Watermelon Gazpacho
Adapted from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite

2 cups chopped ripe red tomatoes, seeds removed
1 small jalapeno pepper, ribs and seeds removed, coarsely chopped
5 cups cubed fresh water melon, divided use
1 tablespoon sherry wine vinegar
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoon minced red onion
1 small cucumber, peeled, seeded, and finely chopped
2 tablespoons minced cilantro, plus more for garnish
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese

In a blender, puree tomatoes, chile, and 4 cups of watermelon. Pour in sherry wine vinegar and olive oil and pulse. Add onion, cucumber and cilantro and season with salt and pepper. Puree until smooth. Pour into chilled bowls and sprinkle with cilantro, feta, and remaining watermelon. Serve. Yield: 6 to 8 servings.

I halved the recipe for the two of us and he still had enough for a lunch today.

Thank you Mary, for introducing me to gazpacho with a recipe that was easy and delicious to eat.

I also had leftover makings for an Traditional Bistro Artichoke, Kale and Ricotta Pie. A quick & easy throw together, no crust pie which is more like a fritatta.

I just was not sure a soup would be enough food for dinner for The Nudge, so I popped the pie in the oven.

Artichoke, Kale and Ricotta Pie
Adapted from Wolfgang Puck Recipes
Serves 4-6.

* Oil to grease the cake pan
* 4 eggs beaten
* 8 ounces ricotta cheese
* 4 ounces Parmesan
* 1 cup canned artichokes, chopped
* 1 bunch kale, roughly chopped
* 1/4 cup sauteed mushrooms
* salt & pepper to taste
* splash of hot sauce (optional)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Grease a cake pan lightly with olive oil. In a large bowl, combine the eggs and cheeses. Roughly chop the veggies and add to the cheese/egg mixture. Stir until combined.

Pour contents of bowl into the greased cake pan and cook until custard is set, about 40-50 minutes. Cool on a wire wrack for 5-10 minutes and serve.

Review: These two dishes work well together. The gazpacho is slightly sweet from the watermelon and the feta gives it that salty quality. The pie is salty from the cheese and sweet from the kale & ricotta. Makes sense to eat a spoonful of one then a forkful of the other. Serve with dinner rolls if you want. I thought about making croutons for the soup but went with the rolls instead.

If you have never tried a gazpacho, you have got to make this dish.

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