Tomato Gazpacho

vegan tomato gazpacho soup served cold with strawberries, cucumbers + vegan sunflower ricotta

this recipe serves four

1 juicy ripe tomato

1 cucumber

1 shallot 

1 red pepper

1/2 jalapeño, seeded (some like it hot, if that's you - add some more)

1/2 bulb of fennel

2 cloves of garlic

1 tablespoon balsamic (or red wine) vinegar 

2 tablespoons of olive oil

1 pint of strawberries

1 pint of cherry tomatoes

1. Reserve half your strawberries, half your cherry tomatoes + half a cucumber; that's your garnish. Cut up the rest of your vegetables into relatively the same size and combine in a large bowl with salt, olive oil and balsamic. Adjust seasoning to your preference, if it needs more acid - hit it with more acid.

2. Taste it. Does this taste like a bowl of something you could eat without even blending it? It should be like a tomato salad that would evoke a chef's kiss from even the most dialled in culinary master. Balancing salt, acid + fat is going to elevate this dish.

3. Let the vegetables macerate for 30 minutes; go ahead and make the sunflower ricotta while you wait (recipe below). Once that's all done, blend your vegetables together until smooth (add extra water or oil it's looking a bit more like a salsa).

4. To plate, add a scoop of ricotta to the bottom of a bowl, then add in your strawberries, sliced cucumbers + cherry tomatoes. Have fun with it! 

sunflower ricotta

1 cup of sunflower seeds, soaked overnight in cold water

1 tablespoon of nutritional yeast

1 tablespoon ofcider vinegar

1 lemon

1. Before you say it, you forgot to soak the seeds. No sweat, pour hot (I mean HOT) tea water over the seeds in a heat-safe container and let sit for 30 minutes; drain and place in blender immediately after.

2. Add in nutritional yeast, cider vinegar + a squeeze of lemon juice (along iwht some zest). Blend on high until smooth(-ish). Add water if it needs it. 

3. Let cool in container in the fridge while you blend your veggies!

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