i have been busy. back to school, camping trip, wedding anniversary, family trip, H1N1 (not me, but the kids i care for), UT football…you get the picture.
until i have a few seconds to write a post, please enjoy the above photo of our anniversary dinner at Castolon in Big Bend. yes, the t-bones were unbelievably good. we bought them in marathon–they came from a local ranch. i wish i had another one right now.
ok, so while most of you are getting out your sweaters and jackets, here in texas we are simply pretending it’s fall. we finally got a break from the 100 degree days this week, and by the looks of it, you’d think 95 was the most refreshing temperature imaginable. it’s all relative, I suppose. this is all to let you know that while you may no longer be in the mood for chilled soup, we are still right smack dab in the middle of enjoying such things.
now while i’m not a big fan of ‘fruit’ soups in general (to me, they’re just a smoothie in a bowl that is frustratingly difficult to drink with a spoon), this is a very unusual blend of refreshing ingredients. althougth there is an element of sweetness from the grapes, it is gently tempered by the nut meats, fresh bread crumbs, and garlic. i told you this was unusual. in fact, at first i wasn’t even sure that i liked it. but it definitely grew on me. give it a try (even if you have to wait until next summer!)
white grape gazpacho (4 first course servings)
adapted from great cold soups and the new york times
3/4 cup toasted blanched almonds or marcona almonds
2 tbsp toasted pine nuts
2 cloves garlic
2 1/2 cups green grapes
1 cup white grape juice
1/2 cup water
2 slices day old hearty white bread, crusts removed and cubed
1 cup heavy cream, whipped to soft peaks
a few tbsp walnut oil for finishing
place blade on bowl of food processor. with processor running, add nuts and garlic until finely minced. then add grapes, grape juice, water, and cubed bread and puree until smooth. strain mixture into a bowl through a fine sieve. chill for at least 3-4 hours. meanwhile whip heavy cream in a bowl until soft peaks form. fold into grape mixture gently. garnish with sliced reserved grapes and drizzle with walnut oil.