Red KeyComment

Cucumber and Mint Gazpacho

Red KeyComment
Cucumber and Mint Gazpacho

I’ve been talking about it all year, and I have finally done it. I ordered an OOOOBY box.

For the uninitiated, OOOOBY stands for Out Of Our Own Back Yard, and is a fruit and Veg box that can be all or partially Organic.

As part of my attempt to eat organic, ever since I discovered that there are some pretty dastardly things done to keep supermarket fruit and veg looking appealing on the shelves for longer, carrots bathed in chlorine anyone? And certainly my desire to eat fresh, local and sustainably farmed produce, made the decision to go with OOOOBY an obvious one.

It arrived this morning at an eye watering 5.32 am, and there was a definite Christmas Morning feeling as we opened it up to see inside. Cavolo Nero, Silverbeet, Broccoli, Carrots, Asparagus, Red capsicum, Golden kumara, two heads of Cos, some very satisfyingly dirty Rocket potatoes, Tomatoes, Tangelos, Apples and Mandarins!

All of this in the Lil Value Box, worth the $54. But the thing that I loved the most was the provenance that came with every single item; who had grown them, where and what degree of organic/spray free growing had been used. Thanks David from Huntly, your Tangelos are A-mazing!

My mind was racing as I pulled out at all the things we wouldn’t normally buy. What would I do with them? Could we eat it all before it went off? But this is the sort of thing that really gets my creative juices flowing and I thought I’d start with the cucumber.

I hope I am not alone in having misgivings about the humble cucumber. I hate to be indelicate, but as my Nana would say “they repeat on me”, and give me a nasty tummy ache. This is because they contain cucurbitacin which causes indigestion in some people. Also found in Green capsicum, something I avoid at all costs.

I know that sprinkling salt on bitter vegetables removes some of the bitterness, and in Summer I make a big batch of Alison Holst’s Bread and Butter pickles, which sits in a briny bath for 12 hours and causes me no gastrointestinal discomfort at all! But with only 1 cucumber I thought I’d be a little more adventurous and decided to make Cucumber and Mint Gazpacho.

I have to admit to messing with the recipe a bit, using coconut yogurt instead of the recommended dairy variety, and leaving out the chives and spring onions as they can give me migraines.

This soup was divine. It was party central in your mouth, next level, divine. Despite the fact that I gave it the mother of all blitzes in the food processor the soup was not silken, but I liked the crunch of the peppers and cucumber that endured the vegecide. The raw garlic hit isn’t for everyone, so depending on how much you like your colleagues you might elect to temper that aspect.

The Coconut yogurt didn’t overpower and despite the unseasonal cold snap causing eyebrows to be raised at the table when chilled soup was proffered, it was a unanimous thumbs up from the family. I’m even thinking of this for Christmas Day entree, decorated with Pomegranate arils, and a swirl of olive oil atop, it would look splendid.