Late Summer Bell Pepper Gazpacho with Mint

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Today, a late summer gazpacho, inspired by Mexican flavors, ideal for those last hot summer days of August. Those days are harder to endure when you’re already back to work, with the burning cobblestones and offices without air conditioning. In Biscarrosse, near the beach, this end-of summer feel was definitely in the air with the last batch of vacationers leaving on Saturday, with a heavy heart and a truck full. Keys are given back to the owners, the kids are seated in the back of the car and it’s the big departure ! Weekends in September are still full with tourists but the atmosphere is totally different, more like Indian summer.

Back to school days are just ahead of us with this slight nostalgia for long lazy days and this hint of sadness when you already think of your next holiday. I’ve always felt a little depressed knowing that I will have to wait 9 more month until the beginning of summer and its sunny perspective. But soon, I will be taken way by the whirlwind of back to school days and the newness there is to it. In a few days, kids will be passing by my windows for their first day, with their new outfit and worried look before crossing the school gates. All in all, the routine will soon get its way and summer days won’t feel as painful as they feel now.

To make it last a little longer and ease the pain of it, make this gaspacho this week, preferably the day before so you can enjoy it directly when you come home from work. If you’re lucky enough to be on holidays, you’re also allowed to make it to enjoy for a long evening by the pool or in the garden :)

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Bell Pepper Gazpacho with Mint

Serves 4

Ingrédients

1 yellow onion, minced
4 red bell peppers, seeded and diced
3 tbsp of olive oil
1 tsp of sugar
1 garlic clove, minced
Zest of 1/2 lemon
1 tsp of Espelette pepper or other mild pepper powder
500ml of vegetable stock
Mint leaves
Salt and pepper

Instructions

1. In a saucepan, sauteed the onion with 1 tbsp of olive oil. Add the garlic and 2/3 of the bell peppers. Cook for 5 minutes then add the pepper powder, sugar, salt and pepper to taste.
2. Add the vegetable stock and bring to boil. Then reduce the heat and let simmer for 15 minutes. Mix the soup until smooth and let it cool first on the counter then in the fridge.
3. When the soup is cold, add the lemon zest and the rest of the bell peppers. Drizzle with the rest of the olive oil and serve !

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