Smoking then juicing plump Roma tomatoes gives this gazpacho an extra kick. The subtly smoky flavour of the tomatoes balances perfectly with the vegetables and seasonings to make a delicious soup with an intriguing taste that is sure to impress. I am busily now processing a big batch of market-fresh tomatoes this way; the juice can be made ahead of time and frozen if you are looking for a way to assemble this soup more quickly (and the smoked tomato juice is fantastic in so many other dishes). The process of mashing the hot hardboiled egg with the minced garlic is one of this recipe’s biggest innovations – it cooks the garlic ever so slightly, diminishing its harsh, raw tasted very nicely. I find it’s best to prepare gazpacho 1 – 2 days prior to serving (but no earlier) so that the flavours have time to blend. If you want to save a few minutes on your gazpacho-making, consider using a good quality, flavoured olive oil – you won’t need to add any extra seasonings!
- 2 cups wood chips
- 20 fresh plum tomatoes
- 1 egg
- 1/2 cup (125 mL) plain fresh bread crumbs
- 1/2 cup (125 mL) chopped green or red pepper
- 1 cup (250 mL) chopped English cucumber
- 1/4 cup (62 mL) finely chopped red onion
- 2/3 cup (165 mL) good quality olive oil
- Juice of 1/2 lemon
- 2 cups (500 mL) beef or vegetable broth
- 1/4 cup (62 mL) red wine vinegar
- 1/4 cup (62 mL) finely minced parsley
- 1 teaspoon (5 mL) dried oregano
- 2 tablespoons (30 mL) Worcestershire sauce
- Pepper, coarsely ground
- 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- Pinch salt
- Tabasco, to taste
- Chopped fresh herbs, to garnish
- Soak wood chips in water for 30 minutes.
- While chips are soaking, cut tomatoes in half lengthwise. Arrange cut side up on barbeque vegetable grilling rack with holes in the bottom (use a cookie cooling rack as a substitute).
- Drain wood chips thoroughly and place on a sheet of heavy duty tin foil; fold up edges to make a packet. Pierce holes all over the top of the packet. Place directly on top of burner of gas barbeque (under cooking grates) and preheat barbeque to very hot.
- As soon as packet begins to smoke (depending upon your grill, this could take up to 30 minutes), reduce heat in barbeque to medium (or, if possible, leave burner under packet on high and turn off other burners).
- Place rack of cut tomatoes on the grill (preferable over one of the burners that has been turned off).
- Smoke for about 20 minutes (by this point the packet will stop emitting smoke).
- Remove smoked tomatoes from barbeque and let cool 15 minutes before handling.
- To extract juice and pulp of tomatoes, process in a juicer or peel and puree in blender or food processor. Measure out 4 cups (1 L) of puree – add water to make up any shortfall.
- Place egg in small pot of cold water; cover and bring to boil then let simmer for 10 minutes.
- While egg cooks, in a pot or large bowl, combine tomato juice, bread crumbs, green or red pepper, cucumber, red onion, olive oil, lemon juice, beef broth (or vegetable stock), red wine vinegar, parsley, oregano, Worcestershire, and coarsely ground black pepper to taste. Stir.
- Place garlic in a shallow bowl and sprinkle with a pinch of salt. When egg has finished cooking, run under cold water just until it is cool enough to handle. Peel and add hot egg to garlic and salt mixture, then mash together with fork.
- Add egg mixture to tomato juice and vegetables.
- With a stick blender (or in batches in a regular blender), puree the mixture until you achieve the consistency you like.
- Taste for seasoning and add salt, pepper, and Tabasco to taste.
- Chill for at least 4 hours and serve. Garnish with fresh herbs.
Serves 8 – 16 depending upon portion size.