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Want to drink a cool summer soup from a glass? Do not turn on your oven. Do not reach for the broth. Start gathering together the elements of a salad -- the olive oil, the sherry vinegar, some blanched almonds, the bread for croutons, and a few garlic cloves. Then take a sharp turn and pull out your food processor. Whiz together the almonds, bread and garlic. Add vinegar and salt, then stream in oil and ice water, and your soup -- courtesy of food writer, Penelope Casas, who imported it from Malaga, Spain, for us -- is made. I like it strained and sharpened with some more vinegar before serving. Casas adds shrimp and green grapes. I snub them both in favor of droplets of sweet cantaloupe.
White Gazpacho with Cantaloupe
Adapted from "La Cocina de Mama" by Penelope Casas
- One 6-inch piece firm-textured French baguette
- 1 1/2 cups blanched almonds
- 2 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
- 2 tablespoons sherry vinegar
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 cup mild extra virgin olive oil
- 4 cups ice water
- 32 tiny balls cantaloupe
1. Soak the bread in some water and squeeze dry. Place it in a food processor, add the almonds and garlic, and blend until a fine-textured puree (don't let it turn to nut butter). Add the vinegar and salt, and with the motor running, add the oil in a thin stream until fully incorporated. Gradually pour in the water.
2. Strain through a fine-mesh sieve into a bowl, cover and chill for several hours or overnight. Before serving, taste for salt and vinegar and adjust if necessary. Serve in glass tumblers and garnish each serving with 8 cantaloupe balls.