Easy Gazpacho with Chive Mini Biscuits: cool combo

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Fast. Easy.

I feel like I’ve typed those words about a million times lately. I think there’s a certain percentage of the baking population who cares more about “fast and easy” than just about any other recipe characteristic.

And you know what? That’s OK. While I wouldn’t want to limit my baking to only dishes using simple ingredients and techniques – and with a preparation time of less than 30 minutes – there are times when going that route sounds extremely compelling.

Like now, when the temperature is climbing into the 80s, and the lawn needs mowing, but oh, how I’d like to be out on the deck, cold drink in one hand, crime mystery in the other…

Which is why I’m SO glad I made up a large bowl of gazpacho first thing this morning.

Reason #2 for turning to a large bowl of gazpacho: after a winter-long indulgence in fresh bread, fudge brownies, and pies of all kinds, I’m looking at my bathing suit and sighing. “Not gonna happen, girl. Time for the gazpacho.”

Several years ago, while following the South Beach Diet (as so many of us were back then), I discovered this tasty, refreshing, somewhat filling, and calorie-friendly cold soup. Made simply of chopped fresh vegetables, vegetable juice, and seasonings – with an optional touch of olive oil – it goes together in just minutes.

And, once made, it stays good for a week or so in the fridge – ready and waiting whenever you feel the urge for a nibble of, say, oatmeal cookie or fudge cake.

Step… away… from… the… carbs…

But not TOO far away. While the biscuits I’ve made to accompany this gazpacho aren’t exactly low-carb, they’re teeny-tiny, thus lower-calorie than a typical biscuit.

And anyway, how could something so cute be bad for you? Enjoy them sparingly with your big mug of Easy Gazpacho.

Let’s start with the soup’s main components: the freshest, tastiest tomatoes, cukes, scallions, and peppers you can find.

Oh, and garlic; you probably don’t have home-grown, but for best freshness, look for a firm, heavy head.

First, listen up: don’t stress over using the EXACT size/weight tomatoes, cukes, and peppers called for in this recipe. If your tomatoes are a bit small, or your cucumber larger than normal, it won’t “ruin” the recipe.

Second, yes, it really really REALLY helps to use a food processor (or blender) to do the chopping. If you’re a good hand with a chef’s knife, go for it; if you’re not, and you don’t have a processor or blender, be prepared to spend some time prepping here.

Did you know that by clicking anywhere on this block of pictures, you can enlarge them to full size? Go ahead, give it a try; it’ll work for any of our photos.

Take two large tomatoes (about 1 pound; the fresher and tastier, the better), cut them in large chunks, and place in the bowl of your food processor. Process until they’re cut in smaller chunks; about 1/2″ is good. Put them into a very large bowl, at least 1-gallon size.

Next, put the following in the work bowl:

1 medium to large cucumber (about 8 to 10 ounces), peeled and cut in chunks
1 green or red bell pepper (about 6 to 8 ounces), seeded and cut in chunks
1 bunch scallions, trimmed and cut in 2″ pieces, green parts included
3 large garlic cloves, peeled and minced or crushed

Chop the cucumber, pepper, and scallions in the food processor until they’re the consistency you like; less chopping = chunkier soup. Add them to the bowl with the tomatoes.

Add 1 large (46-ounce) can vegetable juice (e.g., V8), and the following:

1/4 cup white vinegar or rice wine vinegar
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 1/4 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce, optional
1 tablespoon ground cumin; or substitute fresh cilantro, chopped, to taste
2 tablespoons sugar, to taste; optional

Stir until everything is well combined. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Next up: tiny chive biscuits.

Preheat the oven to 425°F.

Whisk together the following:

1 3/4 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour*
1/4 cup King Arthur Unbleached Pastry Flour*
1 tablespoon baking powder
2 tablespoons snipped fresh chives or dried chives
1/2 teaspoon salt

*Substitute 2 cups King Arthur Unbleached Self-Rising Flour for the AP and pastry flours, if desired; if you make this substitution, add just 1  teaspoon of baking powder, and omit the salt.

Add 1 cup of cold heavy cream, stirring until the dough just comes together, but isn’t sticky. Add up to another 1/4 cup cream, if necessary to make the dough cohesive. Note: If using self-rising flour, use 3/4 to 1 cup cream.

Divide the dough in half. Working with one half at a time, gently pat it into a 6″ x 5″ rectangle; it’ll be about 3/8″ thick. Cut the dough in 1″ strips lengthwise and crosswise to make about 30 small (1″) biscuits. Repeat with the remaining piece of dough.

Place the biscuits close together (about 1/4″ apart) on a lightly greased or parchment-lined baking sheet.

Brush them with additional cream, milk, or butter, if desired, for enhanced browning.

So, why the segregation? I was testing to see if putting the biscuits close together vs. farther apart really matters. As it turns out, they don’t spread out sideways much; so spacing isn’t critical.

Bake the biscuits for 9 to 10 minutes…

…until they’re a light golden brown.

Note: These aren’t your typical moist, tender, flaky biscuit. Think of them more as crackers – little puffy crackers with soft centers, that is.

Serve the biscuits with the gazpacho.

Leftover biscuits? I like to put them in a mason jar and leave them on the counter. Gazpacho is in a jug in the fridge, ready to pour.

When the urge strikes: gazpacho in a bowl. Biscuits refreshed ever-so-briefly in the microwave.

Read, make, and review (please) our recipe for Easy Gazpacho with Chive Mini Biscuits.

Print just the recipe.

PJ Hamel
About

PJ Hamel was born in Wisconsin, grew up in New England, and graduated from Brown University. She was a journalist in Massachusetts and Maine before joining the King Arthur Flour Company in 1990, where she's been ever since. Author or co-author of three King Arthur ...

comments

  1. Mercedes - Sweethoneybunny

    Gazpacho usually has half a yellow onion instead of scallions, and 2-3 cloves of garlic depending on the taste… it can be thickened with stale bread and tomatoes ahve to be first quality (usually you don´t put that much cucumber as ithas a strong aftertaste)… juice? I´d suggest to use canned whole tomatoes next time :)
    And definitely no worcestershire sauce!!!
    I like fine finely chopped, so it can better drunk!
    http://www.sweethoneybunny.com

    Each to his own – to my knowledge, there’s no one “definitive” gazpacho recipe. It’s undergone so many incarnations over the years, that I think adhering to a long-lost original might stifle creativity – as well as neglect some personal favorite veggies! Thanks for your feedback here – PJH

    Reply
  2. Mercedes

    Hi PJ, good point in pimping up the recipe… I´m not a purist, but it just looks sooooo different to what I have been used to ever since I was a kid… don´t show this recipe to anyone from Andalucía (southern Spain, where it originally comes from…).
    My suggestion is to blend it and pass it through a strainer, so all little pieces are retained, and then using some more veggies to garnish: red/green pepper, onion, tomato, cucumber, chunks of stale bread, even boiled eggs, canned tuna or serrano ham pieces, and some ice cubes, and will be the perfect starter for a hot summer day!

    BTW, I love the bread recipes and have become a fan of the no knead bread in a dutch oven!

    Thanks for the suggestions! Glad you’re enjoying the no-knead recipes! ~Mel

    Y’know, I should probably just NOT call it gazpacho; a rose by any other name, etc… Thanks for the suggestions, Mercedes, they sound delicious! PJH

    Reply
  3. glpruett

    Just one suggestion, PJ, on the processing of the veggies. Did you know that if you peel your garlic cloves, and then drop them through the feed tube, with the motor running, you will have very finely minced garlic in seconds? Then you can add the tomatoes, cukes, peppers and whatever else you want and pulse the whole thing until they are as coarse or as fine as you want. However, your garlic will be finely chopped because it was done first! Also, in the interest of adding more fiber to the diet, if you can get unwaxed or better, home-grown, cukes, there really is no need to peel them first. Again, to each his own, of course!

    I’ve got some whipping cream in the fridge, and some of these little biscuits are going to be on the menu tonight! They are just so CUTE! Thanks for another great post!

    Oh, good idea – of course, let the food processor chop the garlic, too! DOH. Thanks for the suggestion, as well as your other good feedback. Enjoy those biscuits! PJH

    Reply
  4. tater05

    The Chive Mini Biscuits are outstanding, really. When I mixed the dough it was quite wet and was a lovely sticky mess to get on to the baking sheet. I was rewarded by the lightest clouds of biscuits, not crackers. Must be due to the extra cream or lack of flour I used but I would not change a thing. Next time I am going to make them bigger! This recipe goes directly to my file entitled “TOP RECIPES – look no further”.

    Thanks for your feedback – glad the biscuits were a hit. :) PJH

    Reply
  5. "big mike"

    Too much liquid. Needs to be creamier. Any ideas?
    Mini Biscuits–Why. I used my 1 1/2 sq. cutter. Still to small. Next time, full size or flatbread. This is my first time for cold soup. However: the family rules. Everyone liked it.
    Glad your family enjoyed it. I’ve never had creamy gazpacho, though there are no rules against adding some heavy cream if you’d like. Cut the biscuits to the size that is right for you. ~Amy

    Reply

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