Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover. -Mark Twain

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Smoky California Avocado, Shrimp & White Bean Gazpacho


I'm not always a big fan of gazpacho, and of course it isn't exactly a traditional Mexican dish anyway, but I found this recipe on the California Avocado Commission's website, tried it, and it made both me and my husband very happy. So of course I have to share it with you.

As the year begins to turn toward summer, attendant with hot sultry days when you just don't want to heat up the kitchen, you'll find this a perfect recipe for a lazy lunch in the shade of a palapa, while you listen to the lapping of the surf.

Frankly, I found the amounts of the ingredients a bit confusing, and I made a few substitutions because I didn't have everything at hand. I used one small red onion, English cucumbers, half a quart of tomato juice, half a cup EVOO, 1 (15.5 oz.) can of white beans (drained & rinsed) and 1 (one) small can (7.5-oz) of chipotle peppers in adobo sauce (use more or less, depending on how much bite you like).

Serve it with some soft flour tortillas and maybe a side of guacamole (you can never have to0 much avocado in my opinion) and you're good to go.

SMOKY CALIFORNIA AVOCADO, SHRIMP, AND WHITE BEAN GAZPACHO
Serves 6

Ingredients:
  • 2 3/4 lbs. tomatoes, peeled
  • 1/2 lbs. cucumbers, peeled, seeded, and diced. (For Kirby or hot house cucumbers, it is not necessary to peel cucumbers)
  • 1/4 lb. and 8 ounces red onions, diced
  • 2 oz. shallots, diced
  • 3/8 quart canned tomato juice
  • 3/8 cups extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/3 cup sherry wine vinegar
  • 1/8 cup (or to taste) finely chopped chipotle peppers in adobo sauce
  • 1/2 lbs. cooked rock shrimp, very coarsely chopped
  • 1/4 lb. cooked cannellini beans
  • 3/4 California avocados, cut in small dice
  • 1/2 Tbsp. salt, or to taste
  • Tortilla chips, as needed for garnish
  • Chopped cilantro, as needed for garnish

Instructions:
  1. Cut tomatoes in half horizontally.
  2. Over a bowl lined with a sieve, seed tomatoes, catching and reserving juice.
  3. Cut each seeded tomato half in two.
  4. Puree tomato, cucumber, red onion, and shallot.
  5. Stir in reserved fresh tomato juice, canned juice, oil, vinegar, and chipotle.
  6. Stir in shrimp, beans, and avocado.
  7. Stir in salt; chill 3 hours to marry flavors.

Ladle 1-1/2 cups into a serving bowl.
Garnish with tortilla chips and cilantro.

Buen provecho!

If you have a favorite recipe for a Mexican or Mexican-inspired dish, I'd love to add it to our recipe box! email lahuerita2@gmail.com (and put "recipe" in the subject box so I'll know what it's about)