On those days when the Texas heat just won’t quit, Rebecca Meeker, the chef, and founder at Austin’s Lucky Lime cools off with this easy, healthy chilled soup. Meeker relies on peak-summer produce—the sweetest watermelons, tomatoes so ripe that they’re about to burst, and the crispest cucumbers she can find. Crushing the ingredients first with your bare hands and then letting them marinate for a few hours, ensures a richer, rounder flavor. It’s also a lot of fun. You can add a little protein to your meal by serving the soup with one of Territory’s Protein Snack Plates or a few slices of our Vinaigrette Chicken.
Makes 3 quarts. About 12 one-cup servings.
1 lb watermelon—peeled and cut into chunks
1 lb ripe red tomatoes—quartered
½ pound cucumbers—peeled, medium diced
6 oz red bell peppers—stemmed, seeded, and diced
3 medium-sized garlic cloves—smashed and peeled
5 large basil leaves
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
3 Tbsp. red-wine vinegar
1 tsp sea salt
Watermelon pieces and fresh basil for garnish
Combine watermelon, tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers, garlic, and basil in a large bowl. Pour the olive oil and vinegar over the vegetables and season with the salt. With clean hands, mash all ingredients together until well combined. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for about 2 hours. Transfer the contents of the bowl to a blender or food processor, in batches if necessary, and blend at high speed until very smooth, at least 2 minutes, pausing occasionally to scrape down the sides with a rubber spatula. Transfer into a pitcher and chill until very cold, at least 6 hours or overnight. Pour the tomato watermelon gazpacho into bowls, garnish with chunks of watermelon and torn basil leaves. Serve.