Rick Bayless’ Roasted Poblano Gazpacho


Gazpacho is an essential summer soup in my world. Because my husband disagrees, I usually make a humongous batch when my gazpacho-loving family will be around to enjoy it with me. ­čÖé This summer, along with my bounty of CSA tomatoes, I bought all of the remaining ingredients to make it when my family came to visit. Unfortunately, I was too busy to throw it together… ­čśŽ

When life returned to normal (sans visitors), with all of my ingredients on hand, I had to make it. Lucky for my husband, I had a new version in mind. This Mexican twist on the classic Spanish soup pleased even my non-gazpacho-eating husband! The multiple toppings made it fun and even more fabulous. This recipe was adapted from Fiesta at Rick’s and┬áSeason 6 of MexicoÔÇöOne Plate at a Time┬áby Rick Bayless, via RickBayless.com.

Yield: Serves 6

  • 2 1/2 pounds ripe tomatoes, preferably vine-ripe heirloom tomatoes, divided
  • 2 large poblano chiles
  • 4 garlic cloves, unpeeled
  • 1 medium (10-12 ounce) seedless European cucumber
  • 1/3 cup chopped cilantro
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 small yellow onion or 1/2 small white onion, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup dry red wine
  • 1 thick slice bread (I used whole wheat)
  • 1┬áT┬ávinegar, preferably sherry vinegar
  • 2 T olive oil
  • coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups croutons, for serving (I used Trader Joe’s garlic-cheese croutons – amazing!)
  1. Chop the cilantro in a food processor. Remove half of the cilantro and place into a serving bowl (which will hold the remainder of the chopped vegetable topping ingredients).
  2. Preheat the broiler. Spread half of the tomatoes and both of the poblanos onto a baking sheet, and roast 4 inches below the broiler until blistered and blackened in spots, about 6 minutes per side. The poblanos may blacken before the tomatoes – remove them as soon as they are done.
  3. Cool the tomatoes and poblanos, then pull or rub off the blackened skins. For chiles, pull out the stems and seed pods, then quickly rinse off seeds and stray bits of skin.
  4. Scoop the roasted tomatoes into the bowl of a food processor, along with any juices on the baking sheet, and the remaining half of the cilantro which was left in the bowl.
  5. Roughly chop half of the poblanos and add to the roasted tomatoes in the food processor.
  6. While the tomatoes and chiles are roasting, roast the garlic directly on a dry griddle or heavy skillet over medium heat, turning occasionally, until soft (they’ll blacken in spots, too), about 10 to 15 minutes. Cool, peel off the papery skin, roughly chop and add to the roasted tomato mixture in the food processor.
  7. While the tomatoes, chiles, and garlic are roasting, bring the eggs to a boil in heavily salted water. When the water comes to a boil, remove from the heat and cover. Let sit for 12 minutes. Drain the hot water and fill the pan with cold water to stop the cooking process. When the eggs are cool, peel and finely chop the eggs. (I use an egg slicer and cut through each egg twice, rotating the egg 90 degrees between presses.) Scoop into a small serving bowl, cover and refrigerate.
  8. Finish the chopped vegetable topping: Chop the remainder of the poblanos into 1/4-inch pieces and place into the topping serving bowl along with the reserved cilantro. Chop enough of the remaining unroasted tomato into 1/4-inch pieces to yield 1 cup; add to the serving bowl with the poblanos and cilantro. Chop half of the cucumber into 1/4-inch pieces and add them too. Stir everything to combine.
  9. Scoop the finely chopped onion into a strainer, rinse under cold water, shake off the excess moisture and add to the vegetable topping mixture in the serving bowl.┬áCover and refrigerate the topping until you’re ready to serve the soup.
  10. Roughly chop the remaining unroasted tomatoes and cucumbers, and add them in the food processor to the roasted tomato, poblano, garlic, and cilantro mixture. Add the wine, bread, vinegar and olive oil. Process to a smooth puree. Stir in about 1 to 1 1/2 cups water to give the mixture the consistency of a light cream soup. Taste and season with salt, usually about 2 teaspoons. Add freshly ground pepper to taste. Cover and refrigerate until chilled, usually about an hour to overnight.
  11. Ladle the soup into chilled soup bowls. Sprinkle the eggs and chopped vegetable topping generously with salt, stir, then pass them separately with the croutons for each guest to add al gusto.


One Year Ago:

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The weather has been unbearably HOT. Gazpacho is the most refreshing soup to eat on a hot summer day. I feel so healthy eating it! It is so FRESH and COLD. It’s perfect as an appetizer, lunch, or light dinner.

I prefer to keep the vegetables chunky, but sometimes I will (almost) puree half of the soup in a food processor and then combine it with the chunky half. This recipe was adapted from my gold standard vegetarian cookbook, The Moosewood Cookbook by Mollie Katzen. I had CSA scallions and cippolini onions to add this time. I think that it tastes the best when it is made a day ahead of time.

Yield: 6 servings

  • 4 cups tomato juice (I use low-sodium Trader Joe’s Garden Patch vegetable juice)
  • 1 sweet onion, finely minced
  • 1 medium clove garlic, minced
  • 1 medium green bell pepper, minced
  • 1 medium red, yellow, or orange bell pepper, minced
  • 1 medium cucumber, peeled, seeded, & minced (I use an unpeeled seedless English cucumber)
  • 2 cups freshly diced tomatoes (a combination of Campari and grape tomatoes is nice)
  • 2 scallions, minced or thinly sliced
  • juice of 1/2 lemon & 1 lime
  • 1 tsp honey
  • 2 T red wine vinegar
  • 2 T fresh basil, chopped
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
  • 3 T extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • Sriracha, Cholula, or cayenne pepper, to taste
  1. Combine all ingredients. OPTIONAL: Puree all or some.
  2. Chill until very cold. (at least 2 hours, preferably overnight)

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