Skip to main content

Improv Cooking Challenge: Roasted Peach-Tomato Gazpacho with Crème Fraîche

It's been awhile since I've participated the Improv Cooking Challenge which was most recently run by Lesa of Edesia's Notebook but is now being headed up by Nichole of  Cookaholic Wife. I'm going to try to be better because it's so much fun.

The idea: we are assigned two ingredients and are challenged to create a recipe with those two things.
July's ingredients: Peaches and Cream.

And here's the line-up for the rest of the year. Stay tuned...

  • August 18: Garlic and Rosemary
  • September 15: Sausage and Mustard
  • October 20: Carrots and Curry
  • November 17: Nuts and Caramel
  • December 15: Cinnamon and Honey

So, peaches and cream? As always, my mind went to savory dishes and I decided to try a roasted peach (and tomato) gazpacho with crème fraîche. I had initially thought I would make my own crème fraîche - it's really easy! - but I ran out of time.

Another challenge for me: we just moved and I have yet to locate my blender. I did a happy dance when I found my food processor, but the blade wasn't packed with the darn thing, so I ended up hand-chopping my gazpacho. Now that was an adventure!


  • 2 organic ripe peaches (soft enough to easily remove the peel, but not too mushy)
  • 1 organic heirloom tomato, cut into thick slices
  • 2 T olive oil
  • 2 T balsamic vinegar
  • 2 to 3 organic Persian cucumbers
  • 1 to 2 cloves fresh garlic, crushed and minced
  • 2 to 3 T fresh cilantro
  • 1 T fresh mint
  • 1 T freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 t raw honey
  • crème fraîche for serving
  • freshly ground black pepper for serving


Preheat oven to 350° F. Place the tomato slices and peach halves in a rimmed baking dish. Roast until slightly tender, approximately 10 to 15 minutes.

Combine the remaining ingredients, except the crème fraîche and black pepper, into a food processor or blender (if you know where yours are!) and blend till smooth. You can season to taste with salt and pepper, but I found that with the lemon and herbs, you don't really need it.

Place mixture in the fridge and let cool. Traditionally gazpacho is served chilled, but you can try it warm if you like.

Ladle gazpacho into serving cups and top with a dollop of crème fraîche and a sprinkle of freshly ground black pepper.


  1. I'll be linking up for my first time tomorrow. Love your creation and anxious to see what the others made.

  2. Yum, Camilla! The hubs suddenly has to be salt-free this week & I was trying to figure out dishes to please his palate -- this will work! Thanks for the recipe.

  3. Camilla, you are always so creative! This is so great. Just FYI: I didn't create the Improv Challenge; administrator duties have been passed down several times. Glad Nichole is resurrecting it. Such a fun thing.

  4. How yummy it looks. I tend to gravitate to sweet rather than savory, but I think I'm going to have to try this. Nice job!


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Quick Pickled Red Onions and Radishes

If you've been reading my blog for even a short amount of time, you probably know how much I love to pickle things. I was just telling a friend you can pickle - with vinegar - or you can ferment - with salt - for similar delicious effect. The latter has digestive benefits and I love to do that, but when I need that pop of sour flavor quickly, I whip up quick pickles that are ready in as little as a day or two. I've Pickled Blueberries , Pickled Asparagus , Pickled Cranberries , Pickled Pumpkin , and even Pickled Chard Stems ! This I did last night for an upcoming recipe challenge that requires I include radishes. Ummmm...of course I'm pickling them! Ingredients  makes 1 quart jar radishes, trimmed and sliced organic red onions, peeled and thinly sliced (I used a mandolin slicer) 3/4 C vinegar (I used white distilled vinegar) 3/4 C water 3 T organic granulated sugar 1 T salt (I used some grey sea salt) 6 to 8 grinds of black pepper Proce

Aloo Tiki {Pakistan}

To start off our Pakistani culinary adventure, I started us off with aloo tiki - potato cutlets. I'm always game for tasty street food. I found a couple of different recipes and incorporated those together for this version. Ingredients 6-8 small red potatoes, scrubbed 1 T cumin seeds 1 T fresh chopped parsley 1/2 t ground coriander 1 t minced garlic Procedure Boil the potatoes until they are tender. Drain and let cool. Mash the potatoes. Traditionally they are mashed without their skins. I left the skins on. In a small pan, toast the cumin seeds on high heat until the begin to give off an aroma and begin to darken. Remove from heat and transfer to a plate to keep them from cooking any more. Blend all of the spices into the mashed potatoes, then shape into small patties. If you wet your hands, the potato mixture won't stick to them. Heat a splash of oil in a large, flat-bottom pan. Dip each patty into beaten egg and carefully place in the oil. P

Hot Chocolate Agasajo-Style {Spice It Up!}

photo by D For my Spice It Up! kiddos this week, I was looking for an exotic drink to serve while we learned about saffron. I found a recipe from food historian Maricel Presilla that mimicked traditional Spanish hot chocolate from the 17th century where it was served at lavish receptions called agasajos . When I teach, I don't always get to shoot photos. Thankfully, D grabbed my camera and snapped a few. Ingredients serves 14-16 1 gallon organic whole milk 3 T dried rosebuds - or 2 t rosewater 2 t saffron threads, lightly crushed 3 T ground cinnamon 3 whole tepin chiles, crushed 2 vanilla beans, split lengthwise 1 C organic granulated sugar 1 lb. bittersweet chocolate Procedure In a large soup pot that can hold a gallon plus, combine milk, dried rosebuds (or rosewater, if you are using that), saffron threads, ground cinnamon, chiles, vanilla beans, and sugar and warm over medium heat till it steams. Whisk to dissolve sugar, then lower heat an