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Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Roasted Red Pepper Gazpacho and Basil Pesto Vinaigrette Salad

Summer is here! I'm doing my happy dance, though it kind of looks more like I'm doing the Elaine from Seinfeld I'm sure. The kids are out of school, and our rushed pace gets to slow down a little.
For me I don't know about you, but I think it's great to have easy non-cooking recipes in the summer. I mean who wants to stand over a hot stove making soup in 80 degree weather right?
For me when it's hot I like a light meal some days, soup and salad a little bread maybe.
So this Gazpacho is zesty and with a salad is filling enough to not make you feel too full, and just think of all the good veggies you are eating to top it off!!!
I was inspired to look into Gazpacho after seeing the Samuel Jackson's I-phone add for the 100th time, I'll admit it. True story, before today I never had Gazpacho!! I was pleasantly surprised though, because it is bursting with flavor.
I think for a summer lunch or dinner with guest's it would not only be healthy and good for you, but you could serve it in say a martini glass maybe and make it look hip and trendy as well!
So the salad....see there is a restaurant near us that has this basil pesto salad dressing to die for! If you live near Gurnee Illinois you might know which one I'm talking about.
Of course I have to try to make a knock of right!? Sure they sell it and you could buy it but really is it that hard to make it? Nah!
I always thought there was sugar in it, because it has a sweet zing so in my mind it was probably not good for me. However, the last time I was in I asked the owner and to my surprise there isn't a drop of sugar in it! So not only is it tasty, so much that you might want to sop it up with your bread, but it's far better for you than anything you get in a bottle from the store!!
I am still tinkering with it but I have come pretty close, so with out anymore delay, enjoy and happy eating!


Roasted Red Pepper Gazpacho
1 yellow onion
2 cups of Roasted Red Peppers
2 tablespoons of fresh cilantro
1 clove of garlic
1 tsp cilantro
2 limes squeezed
4 small Roma tomatoes (cut off the top part from the vine)
1 green onion
1/2 cucumber

Throw all of the ingredients into a blender and blend to smooth and chill for about 2-3 hours and serve.
(Does it get any easier than that!? Serve with some crusty bread and enjoy!)

Basil pesto vinaigrette salad dressing
1 bunch of basil (if you get a small package from the store use all but the stems)
1/3 cup of apple cider vinegar
2 cloves of garlic
1/3 cup of olive oil
1/3 cup of Parmesan cheese
1/3 cup of almond
1/2 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp onion powder
Throw it all in the blender and chill or serve right away!! The oil might separate in the fridge over time, just remix with a spoon or if you store it in a container shake it up and all will be well! :)

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