Tomatoes and Melon: A Gazpacho Match Made in Farmers Market Heaven
Red, ripe watermelons and beefed-up tomatoes get a lot of summer love, but the farmers market offers a veritable rainbow of melons and heirlooms beyond the basics. From yellow-fleshed watermelon to Cherokee Purple tomatoes, the bright array of peak-season fruit has the Balance’s go-to local recipe gal and whole foods expert Lauren Chandler of Lauren Chandler Cooks seeing with gold-colored glasses. Here, she shares her recipe for Hermiston cantaloupe and Sun Gold tomato gazpacho for a sunset-hued soup that will keep you cool. “This chilled soup is perfect on a summer evening when you don’t feel like cooking,” says Chandler. "Try out different garnishes, like chopped basil or mint, corn, thinly sliced fennel and fennel fronds, a pinch of Urfa pepper, a dollop of sour cream or crème fraiche, and/or Dungeness crab meat." Save a bowl for us!
Hermiston Cantaloupe & Sun Gold Tomato Gazpacho
- 6 cups chopped Hermiston cantaloupe
- 1 pint Sun Gold tomatoes*
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons lemon juice
- ¾ teaspoon sea salt
- ½ - 1 cup sparkling water
Add all of the ingredients into a blender and purée until very smooth. Depending upon the size of the blender, you may need to do this in batches. Transfer to a container, cover and refrigerate until chilled, at least one hour. Stir before pouring into bowls to serve.
*"I leave the calyxes [the little green star-shaped stem] on a handful of the tomatoes for a subtle earthy undertone," adds Chandler, who learned the tip from Ana Sortun, chef/owner of Oleana in Boston.