Thursday, June 24, 2010

Blogcritics Article & Guest Post Spotlight Thursday

No new BC article this week. Dude needed a break! We will be back next with another new article.

Now on to a topic that is causing much anguish in the Lazaro Cooks! household, Audi’s vanity. I was not so subtlety informed on Tuesday that it had been an unacceptable number of posts since his last appearance on the blog. That his loyal “Fans” missed him.

What a crock?! Can you believe this cat?! I don’t know what is worse; Audi’s out of control ego, or me giving in to his terrorist like demands?! You decide.

He's sleeping there, hamper be damned!

Guess he didn't like Pop's camera skills...He tried taking it by force!

Okay, that is enough Audi...

Guest Post Spotlight

It is my great pleasure to introduce Sam from My Carolina Kitchen. I have very much enjoyed reading her wonderful blog, which is a treasure-trove of great information. Not only does Sam produce fantastic dishes, but she has a way with words and a lovely writing style. Please check out My Carolina Kitchen, You’ll be incredibly glad you did.

Gazpacho with a tropical twist

I am honored that Lazaro has asked me to be the guest blogger for today. Since Lazaro and Nancy share the hosting, I thought it might be fun to make a soup that would suit both of their tastes. I chose gazpacho, but decided to garnished it with a tropical twist – mango. After all, Lazaro does live in south Florida.

You may think that the only time to make gazpacho is when local heirloom tomatoes are at their peak at the farmer’s market. But if the only tomatoes you can find are plum ones, don’t let that stop you from making this healthy and delicious soup. Plum tomatoes work perfectly for gazpacho. From time to time I’ve played around with the ingredients, used different vinegars - sherry, rice, balsamic or combinations, purchased different colored sweet peppers, substituted V-8 for the tomato juice, added a fresh jalapeno for heat, and used croutons as a garnish, but so far I seem to come back to this particular recipe.

I say so far, because I get bored easily and am always looking for new twists on old favorites. I’ve seen three other gazpacho recipes that sound intriguing: one with pineapple as a base, one with mango, and one with watermelon. I’m curious. Have you ever made gazpacho with these ingredients and did you like the results?

Chunky Gazpacho with a tropical twist

Adapted from “At Blanchard’s Table” – serves 8

8 plum tomatoes cut into quarters
1 large red bell pepper, seeded & cut into quarters
1 medium seedless cucumber, peeled and cut into chunks
4 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 ½ tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 ½ cups tomato juice
Pinch of cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon Kosher or sea salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
4 tablespoons chopped fresh dill
2 tablespoons minced red onion
1 mango, peeled and chopped for garnish

Place the tomatoes into a food processor and pulse until very coarsely chopped but not pureed. Remove from the bowl, and repeat with the pepper & cucumber.

In a large bowl, whisk together the vinegar, lemon juice, oil, and tomato juice. Add the cayenne, salt, pepper and chopped dill to the vinegar mixture. Add the chopped vegetables and minced onion and mix well. Serve very cold, garnished with sprigs of fresh dill and chopped mango.

For food, culinary adventures and travel, you have an open invitation to stop by My Carolina Kitchen anytime and say hello. Again, I want to thank Lazaro for inviting me today.


  1. Ohh this sounds a great dip ! Thanks for sharing. I want to make this and eat with my fried wanton skin :) Thanks My Carolina Kitchen for sharing this.

  2. You gotta love that cat! Thanks for giving into the demands. We had to put our cat to sleep. She was 20 years old. I really miss her. The pictures of Audi made me smile.

  3. Stunning color! Look so tempting! Excellent dish for summer!

  4. Hello Sam!

    I love all kinds of tomato soup but strangely, I have never made Gazpacho, though I'm pretty sure I've had it in restaurants. Sadly the ones I had were generic, at best.

    Now this, with a finishing flourish of fresh mango is a very welcome departure from the cookie cutter versions I've tasted. Thank you for sharing your recipe with us!

    And thank you Lazaro for graciously inviting Sam to share her talent here :)

  5. Wow what great flavors here is this unique baby looks very curious in these pictures.... I just love when they lay on their back you just have to rub their tummy so adorable!

  6. Audi is adorable! The gazpacho looks great, I love how you can see the chunks of veggies in it!

  7. Apologies Lazaro but I'm on Audi's side!! Thanks for featuring Sam today. That gazpacho recipe is going into my file. The days are "ripe" (sorry, pun intended) for it now.

    By the way, I picked up Oliver (our new dal boy) yesterday. He'll be making an appearance on my blog soon.


  8. That gazpacho looks so refreshing! The tropical flavors are a must.

    Oh cats and their ego problems....

  9. I've just come in from Sam's culinary recipe.
    I found that she certainly did her very best to highlight both your tastes and personalities.

    Very appetizing and flavoured cold tomato soup creation;o)

    Now, about Audi...too cute...and I wonder where he get's that ego from...Mommy or Papa???
    My little Sushi puppy couldn't stand when my camera highlighted him...NOW...he actually seems to pose for, who thinks he's the star?
    Ciao for now and flavourful wishes,

  10. O boy! Another winner from Sam's kitchen! And in this hot weather -- perfect!

  11. I try every gazpacho recipe I can get my hands on. I am loving the sweet addition of mango to this. Summer eating is bliss. This gazpacho is bliss.

  12. Sam, what a lovely refreshing gazpacho! I love your addition of mango!

  13. Sam - great guest post - this looks beautiful, light and refreshing! I'm waiting for some good Jersey tomatoes to hit the scene! Love your tropical twist too with the mango, a nice sweet touch on top!

  14. Great guest blog. It is almost time for gazpacho in my part of the world, too. Great recipe. And, Lazaro, you know the old saying, 'Dogs have masters, cats have servants.'

  15. I came here from Sam's blog. What a great picture Sam. So glad to have found your blog. Will be back often. Great taste in format. :)

  16. Oh Audi! LOL. great gazpacho. I need to make some soon--I love it in the summer.

  17. That's why I prefer dogs. The aren't quite as self-consumed! Although, my dog does spend an impressive amount of time on the treadmill. I guess he's watching his figure!

    The gazpacho looks fantastic! I always enjoy your guest posts!

  18. What a lovely recipe! It looks wonderful too. Perfect for this weather we are having in Florida right now...who am I kidding it's summer! This would be a great addition to any summer meal or for lunch!

    Lazaro, you're right, Audi does look like my cat! They have so much expression and personality!

  19. I posted a gazpacho last month that my girl friend made, and now am eager to try yours! It is different, and looks (and reads) as a really yummy dish.
    Thank you - and great pics!

  20. Lovely guest post! This sounds great and goes well with any fried food. Thanks for sharing.

  21. Great to see handsome Audi again; he's an adorable sweetheart!...I think my girls might be crushing on him!! :)
    Wonderful guest post...Have a fun day friends.

  22. My first time to your blog, Lazaro, and I love Audi, ego and all! I followed the bread crumb trail from Sam's blog, and I'm glad I did. What a great recipe! Looks like I could even make this one. YUM!


    Sheila :-)

  23. I like that Audi is the star of this post. And the gazpacho is perfect for summer!

  24. Excellent dish for Summer, vibrant colours ♥

  25. oh wow great guest post Sam your star

  26. Oh Audi! You're a little trouble maker, ain't you!?

    Sam, I get bored easily too :) I like a tropical twist you decided to add. I'm sorry I don't think I have it with mango, pineapple, or watermelon base so I'm not able to say if it's good. Yours looks inviting and lovely gazpacho!!

    Thanks Laz for getting us another talented blogger.

  27. Audi is hilarious. I'd been missing him!

    Sam, I've never made this type of gazpacho but it looks both beautiful and delicious. I've only made gazpacho using a recipe from one of the Moosewood cookbooks. I might like lime juice in yours. :)

  28. I love it, because I get to play with a cat from afar, and never have an allergy!

    Ugly tomatoes are at the peak right now, so this is going on my to do list!

  29. This gazpacho looks very intriguing, with an interesting balance of ingredients.

    Sam, Lazaro, and anyone else reading along here, in case you're interested in participating in a friendly little cooking contest, I've announced the theme and details of the July Culinary Smackdown on my blog (I was last month's winner, ergo this month's host/judge). I know there's a wealth of talent and creativity around these parts - all are welcome to enter or just stop by for inspiration from the other CS entrants. The more the merrier!

  30. This gazpacho recipe is being shared just in time, it's hot outside and this looks like a refreshing blend. I've made gazpacho previously and have not found a recipe I like, perhaps this will be the one.

  31. I think it's a great idea to put mango in gazpacho... what a sweet delicious addition!! It just looks so cold and refreshing for these hot summer days!

  32. Fabulous guest post, Sam! I love your take on the gazpacho and am really interested in the other versions you mentioned, such as using pineapple as a base. They all sounded fun and delicious.

  33. Gazpacho is such a refreshing and light soup, love it! I am sure this one has a great twist with the mango...great recipe and great pick Lazaro, you are getting people ready for summer with this one. I guess Audi wants more camera appearances, everyone needs a share of the fame :o)

  34. Love gazpacho. It's a personal fave. Did you know that you are one of my favorite blogs around? Well, you are! And you prove it I've got a little somethin' somethin' for you over at my place today. Swing on by and take a look.

    Lots of yummy love,
    Alex aka Ma, What's For Dinner

  35. Hey Sam! This gazpacho sounds delicious. I haven't even made a bowl this summer yet, and I live in Florida. So I know what I'm making this weekend.
    p.s. that's a big, beautiful cat, Lazarito. I can tell by his nose. A long nose like Audi's is the sign of an alpha male kitty (smile)!

  36. I love gazpacho, how wonderful that we are into the season for tomatoes and all the goodies that we love in the summer time. Great recipe, you've inspired me, thanks!

  37. I LOVE!!! gazpacho and this time of year with all the fresh tomatoes.
    GREAT!!! recipe!!!
    I'm one of your newest followers, come by and visit I also I'm a foodie and LOVE!!! new recipes.

  38. Well, hey Sam! Fancy finding a new blog only to find the first post you see by an old friend! Go figure ;) The gazpacho sounds the tropical twist! Perfect summer fare.

  39. Oh how scrummy good that gazpacho looks! :-) I haven't made any yet this summer - it just wasn't summery enough! But the sun has arrive and I will be making it soon. Mmm. :-)

  40. What a nice guest post and just in time for these sweltering summer days. I've yet to ever try gazpacho, so now I'm convinced I need to make some STAT.
    Thanks Sam and Lazaro.

  41. great guest post, love the gazpacho recipe, so vibrant...


  42. Hi Sam
    what a perfect summer soup, or dip! Its been way to long since I have made a gazpacho, I think when our tomatoes come in I will have to give it a try!
    thanks so much for a wonderful guest post for Lazaro and for the inspiration!

  43. Great soup and dip for my tortilla or nacho chips... Audi should meet my Yawmee... HAve you seen her on my blog?

  44. I like Sam's recipe for gazpacho! Well done!

  45. Oh! This is perfect for Summer...look so pretty and soooo tasty...would love to dip into it :-)

  46. Sam is an awesome cook and writer! This is yet another of her wonderful recipes that I must try. 8-)

  47. Gazpacho is so delicious! What a nice refreshing recipe!


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