Watermelon Gazpacho

USA

Swapping watermelon for the traditional tomatoes is an ingenious move

SUBMITTED BY

Jeanne

In an episode focused on watermelon, the last thing I expected to hear was, “gazpacho.” I usually associate gazpacho with the traditional tomatoes, but Jeanne from Minnesota in the United States has blown me away with the idea for watermelon gazpacho. Her recipe is kicking off my newest series on watermelon dishes from around the world.

For anyone who is unfamiliar, gazpacho is a type of cold soup that originated in Spain. It’s a light and refreshing dish that blends together tomatoes, vegetables, vinegar, oil, and usually a bit of bread to thicken. So, you can see how watermelon is an excitingly unexpected variation. However, Jeanne has been enjoying her recipe for watermelon gazpacho for years. Since Jeanne and her family have roots all across the United States, she’s not quite sure where this recipe came from or how it became part of her traditions – but either way, she’s happy to have it!

For Jeanne’s watermelon gazpacho, you’ll need to brace yourself for an awful lot of chopping. I promise it will be worth it in the end though. Start by chopping a fresh watermelon, cantaloupe, onion, red pepper, cucumber, garlic, and a jalapeño. You can also choose to add more or less jalapeño or add or omit the seeds to strike your ideal spice level. From here, the watermelon chunks are blended together for a smooth consistency, while the other diced ingredients are added in for a nice contrast of textures. The gazpacho also has a bit of fresh lime juice and pear juice and can be topped with either chopped parsley or cilantro, depending on your preference (and general feelings on cilantro).

Jeanne grew up eating foods like salted watermelon, so the idea of savory watermelon is nothing new to her. But it’s fairly revolutionary for me. Her watermelon gazpacho is spicy, sweet, and sour all at the same time. The spice of the jalapeño is the perfect balance to the sweetness of the watermelon, pear, and cantaloupe, while the lime juice adds the perfect amount of pucker. Watermelon gazpacho is really tailor made for those sweltering summer days where you can’t be bothered with an oven and are looking for something joyfully refreshing.

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Watermelon Gazpacho

Ingredients
  

  • 2 cups watermelon diced into ¼ inch cubes
  • 2 cups pear juice
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 2 cups canteloupe diced
  • 1 seedless, or seeded, cucumber diced
  • 1 small red pepper diced
  • 1 small sweet onion diced
  • 3 Tbsp lime juice
  • 2 Tbsp fresh parsley or cilantro chopped

Instructions
 

  • Process ½ cup of watermelon, along with the pear juice and oil, in a blender or food processor until pureed.
  • Transfer to a medium bowl, along with remaining ingredients. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  • Refrigerate until ready to serve. Enjoy cold!
Course: Dinner, Lunch
Region: North America
Diet: Vegan, Vegetarian

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