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White Gazpacho with Shrimp


From Terrance Brennan, a 1995 Best New Chef, now at Picholine and Artisanal in New York City.

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  1. 6 slices white sandwich bread, crusts discarded, bread torn into pieces
  2. 1 cup whole blanched almonds (6 ounces), chopped
  3. 3/4 cup seedless green grapes
  4. 1/2 medium European cucumber—peeled, seeded and chopped
  5. 1 garlic clove, smashed
  6. 2 1/2 cups cold water
  7. 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  8. 3 tablespoons sherry vinegar
  9. Salt
  10. Cayenne pepper
  11. 1/2 pound shelled and deveined medium shrimp
  12. 1 tomato, seeded and finely diced
  13. 2 tablespoons minced celery
  14. 2 tablespoons minced cilantro
  1. Fill a large bowl with ice and water. In another bowl, combine the bread, almonds, grapes, cucumber and garlic with the water, oil and vinegar. Working in batches, puree the mixture in a blender, then strain through a fine sieve into a large bowl set in the ice bath. Stir the soup until chilled; season with salt and cayenne. Reserve the ice bath.
  2. In a medium saucepan of boiling salted water, cook the shrimp until opaque, about 2 minutes. Drain and refresh in the ice bath until chilled. Drain well, pat dry and cut into quarters crosswise.
  3. Ladle the soup into chilled bowls. Garnish with the shrimp, tomato, celery and cilantro and serve.