Tomato-Bell Gazpacho


Photo by Grace Vance

Grace Vance

This weekend was yet another beautifully warm one, and when I woke up on Saturday morning I could see little hints of green peeking out from the ground. I am so excited that spring is finally starting to appear after the long and frigid months of winter.
Instead of having my usual warm soup that I prefer to have when it’s cold out, I opted for a more summer-y type of my favorite summertime snacks: toast. I love having this year round because, depending on what you pile on top of it, the toast can be warm or cold. I decided I would try to something different, but I wasn’t sure what combinations of food I could try. I was craving something fresh, crisp and hydrating.
Scouring my kitchen for ingredients, I thought back to the warm weathered days of summer when I was picking juicy and ripe tomatoes fresh from my garden, and before I knew it, I was reaching into the very back of my freezer for the tomatoes we had frozen from last summer. I then opened the refrigerator door to find a bag of green bell peppers, chopped them up and loaded them onto my toast with a slather of roasted tomato sauce underneath. Yum.
Today’s recipe features those same lovely tomatoes that I was inspired to use from my new toast combination. Crisp, sweet bell pepper mingles with the intense roasted (or unroasted) flavor of tomato. I’m sure you will pour this recipe over any savory dish you love or just enjoy it on it’s own.
Photo by Grace Vance
Salad. This recipe pairs wonderfully with fresh, crisp vegetables and greens. The slightly salty and distinct flavor of rainbow chard, spinach or kale (although any leafy green vegetables would work!) pick up the sweet and spiciness of this dressing so beautifully. Today I chopped up some carrots and tossed it together with my salad but there are endless add-ins you could use. Mushrooms, onion, broccoli, bell pepper, snap peas, cauliflower, zucchini, cucumber, corn. The list goes on.
Now, I know I called this a gazpacho, but really, this dish can be anything you want it to be. Is a dip or salad dressing not your thing? Try using this recipe in a vegetable based sandwich or wrap, mixed into spaghetti, thinned out with water and marinated into tofu, tempeh or mushrooms or, yes, even eaten as a cold soup. There are endless ways to enjoy this recipe!
Tomato-Bell Gazpacho
2 cups red tomatoes, chopped
1 bell pepper, roughly chopped (any color)
1 small green onion (reserve some for garnish)
⅓ cup rainbow/swiss chard stems, chopped (omit if using a non high speed blender as it could damage the blades)
1 rib of celery, chopped
¼ cup raw sesame seeds, unhulled
the juice from half a lemon
⅛-¼ tsp ground coriander
¼ tsp fresh black pepper
cayenne pepper to taste

  1. Combine all ingredients into a high speed blender and blend until smooth and creamy. Adjust the flavor to your tastes if needed. Pour into a serving dish and garnish with thin slices of green onion.

This recipe is amazingly easy to prep and make and I hope this ease helps you to make this dish and other recipes like it more often! To this gazpacho, simply pour into a bowl and cover. If you are not going to serve it immediately after making, be sure to stir everything together before serving as the liquid from the tomatoes separates easily.
Photo by Grace Vance
There is really nothing better than fueling your body with the most nutritious food you can, and as warmer weather comes along, I hopes it becomes even easier for more people to crave a nice salad, smoothie, juice and vegetables! But if you’re anything like me, you might just crave those foods all the time! I wish you a happy Saint Patrick’s Day and a lovely spring break!
By Grace Vance
Photos by Grace Vance