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Watermelon Gazpacho Recipe

Watermelon Gazpacho
Difficulty: Easy | Total Time: 45 mins | Active Time: | Makes: 6 servings (about 7 cups)

Is this gazpacho authentic? Probably not, but watermelon, basil oil, and cayenne salt add a summery twist to the classic cold soup.

What to buy: Be sure not to use underripe tomatoes, as they will cause the soup to have a mealy consistency.

Special equipment: Use a blender or an immersion blender in this recipe for a good consistency.

This recipe was featured as part of our Cooling Off story.

INGREDIENTS

For the basil oil:

  • 1/2 cup packed fresh basil leaves
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper

For the gazpacho:

  • 1 1/2 pounds coarsely chopped cored tomatoes
  • 1 1/2 pounds coarsely chopped seedless watermelon
  • 3 cups large-dice crustless day-old country bread, such as pain au levain
  • 2 medium Kirby cucumbers, peeled and coarsely chopped
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/4 cup coarsely chopped fresh basil leaves
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 medium red onion, coarsely chopped
  • 3 medium garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons sherry vinegar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt, plus more as needed
  • 1/2 teaspoon whole cumin seeds
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper

For the garnish:

  • 1/2 cup small-dice Kirby cucumber (about 1 medium)
  • 1/2 cup small-dice seedless watermelon
INSTRUCTIONS
For the basil oil:

  1. Process the basil and olive oil in a blender until smooth. Season with salt and pepper; set aside.

For the gazpacho:

  1. Place all of the ingredients in a large bowl and toss to combine. Let stand for 15 minutes.
  2. Working in batches, process the mixture in a clean blender until smooth. Transfer the puréed soup to a large, nonreactive bowl. Taste and season with salt as needed.

For the garnish:

  1. Combine the cucumber and watermelon in a small bowl.
  2. To serve, ladle the soup into bowls, top with the cucumber and watermelon mixture, and drizzle with the basil oil.

Beverage pairing: This dish pairs well with a crisp white wine such as a Sauvignon Blanc or a Spanish Albariño.