Summertime gazpacho with basil oil  

Recipes Ian Harrison, Sugo in Tauranga. Images Brydie Thompson

The trick to making this the best is using the best produce you can get. The farmers market must be the best place for these treats. You don’t want a strong olive oil for the basil oil because it will steal from the basil. So, use a normal cooking style olive oil from a supermarket then break out beautiful extra virgin olive oil when seasoning/finishing the dish.

6 ripe red tomatoes
½ cucumber, peeled
3 red capsicums,
1/2 red onion – peeled
1 garlic clove, peeled
1 celery stick
½ red chilli, cut in half and deseeded
3Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
Sea salt
50g basil leaves
½ cup olive oil
1 punnet Cherry tomatoes
Balsamic vinegar
Basil leaves

Dice all vegetables into 1cm dice, mix with the oil and a good pinch of salt. Leave to marinate overnight- covered, at room temperature.

For the basil oil, bring 3 litres of water to a boil and season with salt. Boil the basil with a lid on for 30 seconds, drain and refresh into ice water.

Once completely cool, drain the basil again and squeeze out as much water as possible (use a tea towel to help). Roughly chop the basil and place into a blender with the oil. Blend until smooth. Put into a squeezy bottle until needed.

The next day blend marinated ingredients until very smooth and pass through a fine sieve. Chill in the fridge.

For the cherry tomatoes, cut in half, season with salt, balsamic vinegar, and olive oil. Leave at room temperature to marinate for 2 hours. When you need the tomatoes, drain and season with a little fresh olive oil.

To serve, chill the bowls you’re using and scatter the cherry tomatoes mix on the bottom of the bowls. Pour in your soup, garnish with the basil oil and basil leaves.

Serve with some gorgeous fresh bread.

About the Author

Vicki Ravlich-Horan

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