This summer has been a season of getting healthy. Sure, I’ve enjoyed my share of baked goods and decadent treats, but for the most part I’ve been trying to get my eating habits back on track. As Tiffany shared a couple weeks ago, we’ve both taken the Whole30 challenge, which has brought my idea of clean eating to a whole new level.
Developing recipes while avoiding any added sugars, dairy, grains, legumes, alcohol and processed foods has taken me outside my culinary comfort zone. While I do enjoy healthy recipes, most of my cooking has included at least a hint of one of those non-Whole30 ingredients, even if it’s been just a tablespoon of honey or cream. Needless to say, over the last month my cooking repertoire has vastly expanded.
Variety is essential for me. I get tired of the same foods pretty quickly – especially when I’m trying to eat clean. More than once during my Whole30, I’ve found myself wandering the aisles of Whole Foods picking up anything from passion fruit to plantains to melons to whatever else happens to strike my fancy that day. The “an apple a day” mantra just sounds boring. Why not an apple one day, cherries the next, blackberries after that and then kiwi?
Not only has variety of the actual ingredients been important, but variety in the preparation has also been key. Fresh mango salsa, spiced stone fruit over pork chops, grilled romaine salad and chilled soups have made eating fruits and vegetables much more fun than the boring dishes I had grown accustomed to…and eating should be fun, shouldn’t it?
This recipe for Cantaloupe Gazpacho hits all the important points – it’s simple, clean, chock-full of seasonal produce and differs from my normal preparation of fruits and veggies. Gazpacho is typically made with a tomato base, but I couldn’t resist featuring fresh, juicy cantaloupe. Of course, I didn’t want to leave the tomatoes out entirely so they’ve found their place in a relish served on top for added flavor and texture. (I chose heirloom tomatoes for added variety, but you can use any type you like.)
Do you crave variety like I do? What are your favorite ways to enjoy fresh produce? I’d love to hear in the comments below!
Want to know the results of my Whole30 journey? Click here.
Yields 4-6 servings
Adapted from Savory Simple
1 ripe cantaloupe
1 large cucumber, peeled and halved (so it can fit in the blender easily)
1/4 teaspoon minced garlic
1/4 cup olive oil
Juice of 2 lemons
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1. Cut the cantaloupe in half and scoop out the seeds. Slice off the outer rind. Cut the rest of the cantaloupe into pieces small enough to fit in a blender.
2. Add the cantaloupe and cucumber to the blender, along with the garlic, olive oil and lemon juice. Blend until smooth. Add salt and pepper to taste and blend until fully incorporated.
3. Transfer soup to a container with a tight lid and refrigerate for at least 2-3 hours, and up to overnight. (This allows the flavors to really develop, so don’t skip this step!)
4. Gently stir the soup in case any ingredients slightly separated. Pour into bowls and top with Heirloom Tomato Relish. Serve and enjoy!
Quick Tip: Enjoy this dish as a refreshing first course or serve it in shot glasses at a cocktail party for “Gazpacho Shooters.”
Heirloom Tomato Relish
1/4 cup chopped heirloom tomatoes
1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil
1 teaspoon red wine vinegar
Salt and pepper
1. Add all ingredients to a small bowl and stir. Let the relish sit for about 15 minutes before using so the flavors can marry.
2. Spoon relish over Cantaloupe Gazpacho and enjoy!
This post was sponsored by Whole Foods. All opinions expressed in this post are 100% my own.