By Julia Westhoff
To which you reply, What!? Melon Gazpacho?! That sounds amazing!
Or at least, that is how I replied when I came across this recipe in the super cute book called The Picnic that I got from the library.
I don’t normally pick up books like this, but the cute little drawings of baguette sandwiches and the sweet suggestions for different picnic themes were just irresistible.
Now, don’t get me wrong – this book had many terrible ideas. Take, for instance, 99 Uses for Mason Jars. Some of them made sense, sure – Mason jars do make excellent soup containers. But using Mason jars to outline your badminton court? Huh? I can think of about 10,000 other readily available picnic items that would do a better job (plus, who really brings badminton along on a picnic? Just relax on your blanket and look up at the clouds, people).
It is melon season and this gazpacho is wonderful, whether served at a picnic whilst playing badminton with Mason jars or on your porch whilst sitting on your bottom.
Adapted from The Picnic
1 large cucumber, peeled, halved lengthwise and seeded
1 3-pound cantaloupe, peeled, seeded and coarsely chopped
1 roasted red bell pepper (I used one from a jar), coarsely chopped
1/3 cup coarsely chopped red onion
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
1/3 cup plain yogurt
2 tablespoons finely chopped mint
Coarsely chop half the cucumber and put it in a blender with the melon, pepper, onion, lime juice and ½ teaspoon salt. Blend until finely pureed, about 2 minutes. Taste and adjust season with lime juice and salt. (This is where they want you to divide the soup into, of course, mason jars, but I didn’t do that). Refrigerate until cold.
Make garnish: Finely dice remaining cucumber. Mix with yogurt, mint and a pinch of salt and refrigerate until ready to serve.