SUMMER TREATS: Are you weighed down by the heat? Here are a couple of FOOD+ recipes to lift you up.

Summer is here and not everyone has the chance to be heading to the beach, gaze at the waves and fill their lungs with the fresh and cooling marine breeze. Being themselves confined to study and work in cities, the editors of the FOOD+ Journal have found a couple of recipes to help fight the heat while keeping their spirits high.


From Al-Andalus: A Cold Soup Under The Burn of the Sun

Prep Time: 20 mins

Servings: 6 persons

Picture by Darrell Chaddock

Gaz-pa-cho.

Gazpa-cho.

Gazpacho.

Tell me what is in your name and I will tell your story.

Click on the play button before reading below.

Are you from the Christian Mozarabic* word caspa, meaning residues or fragments? Or are you from the Hebrew word gazaz: to break into pieces? In the end, it seems you are just really about bread crust.

Nevermind, your name is a reflection of Al-Andalus, a time that Europeans tend to forget, a region that went far beyond the mere borders of present days’ Andalusia. You take on from the Muslims, and from the Christians, and from the Jews. And before that, maybe, from the Romans and the Greeks.

You were born as a cold soup and you have remained a cold soup. From simple ingredients: olive oil, bread and water, you have been adorned with ripe tomatoes, peppers and cucumber, depending on the trends of the time.

Becoming more elegant, more refined. And still, to the core, you stick to your foremost mission: help us fight the heat of the sun in summer time, when the tomatoes are redder and the cucumbers sweeter.

White or red or green, no matter the colour, as they say: de gazpacho no hay empacho (“one can never have too much of a good thing”).

To make a red gazpacho, believed to have been invented in Seville, you will need:

Picture from Edgar Castrejon

INGREDIENTS

5 ripe tomatoes (really good ones)

1/2 a pepper of each colour

1 cucumber

3 fresh onions

2 slices of bread, soaked in water

2 to 3 garlic cloves

1 tablespoon of vinegar

3 tablespoons of olive oil

Pepper and salt

1 pinch of chilli

DIRECTIONS

First, peel the tomatoes, the cucumber and the peppers.

Cut them in dices.

Peel and cut the onions and garlic.

Throw all the vegetables and the bread in a blender.

Blend. Add the salt, pepper, chilli and vinegar. Blend. Add slowly the olive oil and blend. Once, twice, thrice, as much as necessary to get a smooth soup.

Pour the glorious liquid in a large bowl. Give it a stir. Add three to four ice cubes. Give it a stir.

Refrigerate.

Serve cold in glasses or soup plates — according to your style.

Drink as much as you want / can / feel.


A Happy Day: An Original Recipe

Prep Time: 10 mins

Cook Time: 30 mins

Servings: as many portions as the heart desires

INGREDIENTS

2 cans curiosity in its original juice

1 1/4 sticks of optimism

3 tablespoons sugar

2 tablespoons glee

1 tablespoon all-purpose smile

2 teaspoons imagination extract

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 cup cheerfulness

2 happy farm eggs

1 pair of sparkly blink-y eyes

1 pair of rose-tinted spectacles

Picture from Mabel Amber

DIRECTIONS

Preheat oven to 400℉ (200 ℃) and grease an 8 1/2-inch square ovenproof dish with glee.

Go to the bathroom, look in the mirror and put on the all-purpose smile. Then return to kitchen, keeping the all-purpose smile intact and put curiosity, baking powder, baking soda and eggs in a large bowl. Mix until ready. Add imagination extract and sticks of optimism. Put in oven and bake.

Take out after assigned cooking time, sprinkle sugar on top for sweetness. Let stand for 10 minutes, put on rose-tinted spectacles and admire. Serve immediately with cups of cheerfulness and sparkly blink-y eyes.


Let us know what you think of the recipes and if they work for you. And if you have one of your own you’d like to share, please add to the comment section below or you can write to the editors here.

These recipes are part of FOOD+ “Side Orders”, more to come.