Chris Hastings’ Shrimp Gazpacho with Lemon Oil
This is our Southern take on a classic Spanish soup. Because it is always served cold, it is a light and refreshing meal for a sultry Southern day. You can substitute jumbo lump blue crabmeat for the shrimp, if you prefer. Many good olive oil companies also produce lemon oil in which the olives are pressed with fresh lemons, creating fragrant, flavorful oil. Lemon oil adds a bright, rich quality to this soup.
Serves 6; about 6 cups
- 1 1/2 pounds ripe tomatoes, cored, about 3 to 4 medium tomatoes
- 1/2 cup peeled, seeded, and finely diced cucumber
- 1/2 cup finely diced zucchini
- 1/2 cup finely diced yellow squash
- 1/2 cup peeled, seeded, and finely diced tomato
- 1/2 cup seeded and finely diced red bell pepper
- 1/2 cup seeded and finely diced yellow bell pepper
- 1/2 cup finely diced Poblano pepper
- 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
- 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 26 large (21 to 25 count) cooked, peeled, and diced fresh shrimp, about 1 pound
- 12 fresh basil leaves, thinly sliced
- 3 tablespoons lemon oil
Slice each of the tomatoes into 4 quarters. Place the tomatoes in a food mill and turn until all of the juice is extracted. You will need about 2 cups of the fresh tomato juice. Discard the tomato seeds and peel. Alternatively, the tomatoes can be seeded, roughly chopped, and pureed in a food processor or blender. Strain through a fine-meshed sieve and discard any solids.
Combine the tomato juice and the next 9 ingredients (cucumber through vinegar) into a large bowl, stirring well to combine. Season the soup with the salt and pepper and stir in the diced shrimp. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours or until the soup is well chilled. Ladle the soup into serving bowls and garnish each serving with 1 teaspoon of the chopped basil and 1/2 tablespoon of lemon oil. Serve chilled.