YOUR HEALTHY PLATE: Golden Gazpacho Soup

You can think of gazpacho as soup and salad, both, at the same time. It will make a great first course at a nice dinner, but you can also take it to work for lunch (maybe with Mary’s Gone Crackers or a slice of toasted whole-grain bread). It would also make a scrumptiously satisfying mid-afternoon snack.

After my husband arrived home one time with a large tray of golden, acid-free tomatoes, I had my eye on those beauties from that instant on. We ate a few on Friday night, and a few more on Saturday. Then, I could no longer resist, so I swooped in on Sunday morning to pulverize the rest in my Vitamix! My husband said it was okay because he wanted to go buy more anyway. And he did.

I actually made this recipe to share at a barbecue and, no exaggeration, it was the best gazpacho I have ever made. Somebody was asking me for a gazpacho recipe the other day: If you’re reading this, use this one (with whatever tomatoes you have)! I love how simple it is. And I love that the tomato-ey sweetness is enhanced not with sugar but with red pepper and balsamic vinegar. Everything in this recipe comes in pairs: tomatoes and peppers, garlic and onion, oil and vinegar, salt and pepper. Alice Waters (The Art of Simple Food) would be so proud.

Ingredients:

9 medium golden-yellow tomatoes, quartered
2 additional golden-yellow tomatoes, chopped fine
1/2 red pepper, cored and seeded
2 medium cloves garlic, peeled
1 medium white onion, peeled and quartered
2 tablespoons olive oil (extra-virgin)
2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper

Directions:

Set aside the two chopped tomatoes.

Add the remaining tomatoes, red pepper, onions and garlic to the blender, and blend on high 30-45 seconds until smooth. Pour in the olive oil, vinegar, salt, and pepper, and blend again for 10 seconds more.

Pour the soup into a pitcher or large glass jar, stir in the chopped tomato, and leave to chill in the refrigerator for a few hours to blend the flavors. 

Note: You are going to need a high-speed blender to make this recipe. A regular one won’t work because it isn’t strong enough to pulverize everything. There are a number of good high-speed blenders, like Vitamix or Blendtec, and you should feel good about getting a refurbished one, too. A friend of mine got a refurbished one and it lasted more than 15 years.

Finally, a homegrown gazpacho prayer: thank you sun, thank you rain, thank you farmers and, of course, thank you Vitamix.

Serves 8-10. 


YOUR HEALTHY PLATE: Joe’s Sassiest Asian Slaw Ever

My buddy and longtime fan Joe Gardewin has come up with what he calls “the very best and sassiest Asian slaw ever.” He says it’s great on turkey tacos but you should also feel free to eat it plain, right out of the bowl, if you want! His list of veggies is somewhat flexible, but includes cabbage, daikon radish, and hot peppers at the very least, and he is proud to say that he is a legit food snob since he hand-cuts his slaw. Go, Joe! Continue reading


Fourth of July Celebration (almost)!

Here’s one of my all-time favorite posts, reposted from July 4, 2010:
It’s the fourth of July today, and my sibs and I have converged on the family home for the great annual bash. On and off since yesterday evening, five strapping grandsons have been carrying cartons of beer, wine, soda, water, and iced tea up to the deck, where great drums of ice stand ready to receive them all. Continue reading


Eat, Drink, and Be Merry (plus one glorious recipe!)

An article on the obesity epidemic once ran in our local paper with the headline “Eat, drink, and be sorry.” Eat, drink, and be SORRY? The actual quote reads, “Eat, drink, and be merry, so that joy will accompany him in his work all the days of his life.” And herein lies the problem. Continue reading


Fruit: Friend or Foe?

Here is how this all got started:
Last month I received an email from a friend asking about whether it was okay to eat a lot of fruit every day. She had seen an article in the NYTimes, “How to Stop Eating Sugar,” in which she read that fresh fruit is a good way to satisfy a sweet tooth without resorting to processed items with their excessive (absurd even, I would say) amounts of added sugar. Without specifying exactly how much was too much, the author included a warning… … Continue reading




The Box-of-Real-Food Diet

I write Your Health is On Your Plate because there are a couple of things that I want everyone to really understand. First, I want you to understand that there’s a big difference between real food and manufactured calories. A huge difference, really. Real food nourishes; manufactured calories entertain (at best). Manufactured calories also cause a lot of very serious medical problems. Like diabetes and obesity, for starters. And strokes and heart attacks. Continue reading


Make Your Insulin Last a Lifetime

If you’ve seen my TED talk, then you know I spend a fair amount of time teaching folks how to use their insulin more efficiently so that they don’t run out, and so they have enough (hopefully) to last a lifetime. Insulin is like a valet service that escorts blood sugar from your blood to all your cells. If you don’t have enough, your sugars start to rise. The fact is that even though you need insulin to live, it is not your friend. You want to use as little as possible. You want the levels of insulin in your bloodstream to stay as low as possible. Just like blood sugar, you want your insulin levels to remain low. Why? Continue reading


Trying to Eat in a Hospital

My mom doesn’t take diabetes medicine; she keeps her blood sugars normal through a combination of common sense and careful carbohydrate consumption. A few years ago, she had to be hospitalized at her local hospital for what she called a “minor procedure.” The procedure went fine, but the food did not. Continue reading