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Easy Summer Soup

Body+Soul, June 2007

For cookbook author Patricia Wells, eating vegetables and herbs seasonally is "like coming back to an old friend." Her latest book, "Vegetable Harvest," takes a food group often considered a mealtime afterthought and puts it at the center of the plate. Many of her simple, delicious, and often surprising recipes use ingredients that Wells grows in her own garden in Provence.

One summer favorite takes a classic and gives it a twist: Tomato and Strawberry Gazpacho.

To make, puree 1 pound of garden-fresh tomatoes (rinsed, cored, and quartered, but not peeled) and 1 pound of fresh strawberries (rinsed and stemmed) in a food processor or blender. Add 1 teaspoon of balsamic vinegar and blend again. Chill thoroughly and serve in eight small, clear glasses as a refreshing aperitif.