This post was originally published here on July 29, 2013. I’ve since updated the text and photographs. It’s a quick and easy recipe that I know you’ll love!
There are a lot of things I miss about living in Seattle, WA. The larger-than-life mountains. The availability of craft beer on virtually every street corner. And some of the most spectacular sunsets I’ve ever seen in my life. Just to name a few.
But this time of year, I mostly miss the free blackberries.
Blackberry bushes are an invasive species to the Pacific Northwest. And they are a thing that Seattleites just love to hate. Most of the year, they are considered a nuisance. Their dense, gnarly branches creep into every backyard, parking lot, alley way and hiking trail imaginable. And their thorns aren’t afraid to bite back, leaving you with holes in your clothing and blood on your hands if you attempt to tame them.
BUT! Then late Summer happens and HELLO free blackberries. Ripe for the taking. In the most literal way possible.
I used to pick buckets of blackberries almost every morning (and I had the purple tongue to prove it!) when I was out walking my dog. Now, I’m forced to purchase most of my blackberries from the grocery store (oh the horror). But I still manage to eat (and drink!) more than my fair share each Summer.
This Blackberry Sauce recipe is one I started making in Seattle, when I had more blackberries than I knew what to do with. And even though my availability of blackberries has reduced significantly, I still love making it today. It only requires 5 ingredients and 5 minutes of time. And it transitions flawlessly throughout the entire spectrum of mealtimes. Try it at breakfast with yogurt, oatmeal, pancakes or waffles. Use it as a topping for grilled chicken, pork or salmon. Or enjoy it with ice cream, cheesecake or pound cake. The possibilities are endless!
Hi Friends! I hope you all had a fabulous 4th of July weekend. Can you believe today is already Thursday? I mean, it’s pretty awesome that the week is almost over. But I also feel totally behind and out of whack. The whole Tuesday Holiday thing has really messed with my brain (and my schedule).
But I can’t complain. Because my weekend was really flipping awesome. Most weekends, I tend to work way more than I should. It’s super hard for me to let go of my responsibilities (even my fictitious responsibilities) and relax. But this weekend, I said “screw it” and I completely soaked in all the glory that is Summer. I went boating, had a pool party, went to a cook-out, ate s’mores, drank beers, listened to live music, had a girl’s night and just generally had a blast.
I’m tired. And I have a lot of catching up to do now. But it was completely worth it.
I also did a lot of cooking and baking (for aforementioned parties and cook-outs). So this week, I’m taking it easy in the kitchen. Which means this Watermelon and Tomato Gazpacho with Chimichurri Sauce is on repeat.
There aren’t many foods I can think of that are as quick to prepare as a chilled soup. Just trim and chop your produce. Then drop it all straight into your blender and push the button. Easy peasy.
My house stays cool. And so do I. That’s a major win in my book.
This recipe is loosely adapted from Ina Garten’s gazpacho recipe, which I used to make religiously each Summer. But now I prefer a smoother texture (I don’t want to feel like I’m eating salsa with a spoon!), so I blend mine more thoroughly. And I’ve added in fresh watermelon to give it some sweet notes, all while really upping the hydration factor. The homemade chimichurri sauce makes great use of Summer’s bounty of fresh herbs. And it provides a necessary savory contrast to the sweetness in the gazpacho. Remember, this is suppose to be soup. Not a smoothie bowl.
You can use any kind of tomatoes you like. Roma or plum tomatoes are what I gravitate towards most often, because they have fewer seeds than some other varieties. But it’s hard to resist those beautiful heirlooms this time of year. So use what you love and/or have on hand. Also, don’t be afraid to play with the proportions in this recipe. If you want more zip, increase the amount of jalapeño pepper or red onion. If the soup seems too sweet to you, drizzle some vinegar on top before serving to cut the sweetness. It’s hard to go wrong here. Especially when all the Summer produce is so abundant and flavorful.
It’s also fun to play with additional toppings. If you want something more hearty, try adding croutons, crumbled cheese, a spoonful of Greek yogurt, chopped nuts or some roasted chickpeas. The watermelon stars are cute, but totally optional.
I’m sharing this Watermelon and Tomato Gazpacho with Chimichurri Sauce as part of our monthly 30 Minute Thursday series. You can find more quick and easy recipe ideas below (just click the links!). Or check out the hashtag #30MinuteThursday on Instagram for additional inspiration. Because it’s way too nice out to be stuck inside cooking dinner!
Cheesy Beef Tortellini Skillet by Pumpkin ‘N Spice
Lemon Garlic Shrimp and Zucchini Noodles by Kristine’s Kitchen
Grilled Fig, Bacon, and Arugula Flatbread Pizza by Flavor the Moments
Avocado Pesto Quesadillas by She Likes Food
Mexican Quinoa Salad by Life Made Sweeter
Southwestern Grilled Turkey Burgers (Freezer) by Sweet Peas & Saffron
One Pot Pasta Primavera by The Recipe Rebel
Shrimp Quesadillas with Avocado Cream by Bake.Eat.Repeat.