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Garden Gazpacho

 4 - 5 ripe red tomatoes

2 cups tomato or vegetable juice

1 - 8 to 9” cucumber, peeled, seeded and chopped

1 green bell pepper, seeded and chopped

1 jalapeno, seeded and finely chopped (optional)

4 scallions, white and green parts, thinly sliced on the diagonal

¼ cup chopped cilantro

2 cloves crushed or mashed garlic

¼ cup seasoned rice wine vinegar

¼ cup extra virgin olive oil

2 tablespoons lime juice

1 teaspoon hot sauce or to taste (optional)

Salt to taste

Ground Black Pepper to taste


Cut a cross into the base of the tomatoes.  Place tomatoes in a pot of boiling water for 1 minute.  Remove and immediately place in cold water.  Remove from water and peel the skin from the tomatoes.  Finely chop tomatoes and place in a large glass or stainless steel bowl. 

Add all other ingredients except salt and pepper.  Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 – 3 hours. 

Remove from refrigerator and puree half of mixture in a food processor or blender.  Return to bowl with other half of vegetables.  Taste for seasoning, adding salt and pepper as needed.  If desired, the entire batch can be processed.  This may be done in small batches to fit in processor or blender. 

Serve topped with chopped cucumber, green pepper and cilantro.
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