Gazpacho is a tomato-juice based cold soup that includes chopped raw vegetables, herbs and spices. After I gave Deena some suggestions for using it, she responded, OK so let me just say I still don’t know what to do with it! I mean, all interesting ideas but I imagine changing its form and it still just being blah.
Deena hit on a problem many of us have with leftovers. We’re dealing with feelings as well as food. How upsetting to spend time making a special dish for guests, to find they don’t appreciate it.
Deena might also be concerned about making something new out of the gazpacho, and ending up throwing it away. Sometimes home cooks do have to cut their losses and throw things out. Also, gazpacho is commonly recommended as a way to use up leftover salad. Leftovers from leftovers are no fun.
But as long as the gazpacho isn’t spoiled, we can jazz it up for another dish. All that tomato and green vegetable goodness is still there. The question is how to draw it out. The trick is to think of leftover food as a gift toward future meals, and a challenge.
A search of internet forums found some creative answers to the leftover gazpacho question. They say that freezing or cooking the cucumber and lettuce don’t affect the quality, but you can puree the gazpacho if you like before using it.
How to Use Up Leftover Gazpacho
- Salsa. Add Mexican spices and serve with chips.
- Pasta Sauce. If you like, add spices, meat, cheese or beans. Or saute onions and mushrooms, then add the gazpacho.
- Grains. Use instead of all or part of the cooking water for rice, quinoa or bulgur.
- Soups and stews. Think of the gazpacho as a textured vegetable stock, to use as a base for rich soups and stews.
- Sauce for fish or chicken. Add lemon juice or spices.
- Save in small portions. If you have a lot of gazpacho, freeze in small portions for adding to any of the above. That way, it won’t overwhelm any one recipe.
It may be too late for Deena’s gazpacho, but I hope these ideas will help readers. Readers, please feel free to share your own leftover challenges.
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