Thanks to globalization, we are happy to enjoy Italian pizza, Irish soda bread, French beef bourguignon, Russian borscht, Mexican salsa, Spanish gazpacho, and other dishes from around the world.
In summer, when the sun is at its peak, we want something cooling and refreshing. Gazpacho is an ideal dish for a hot day. This wonderful summer soup was born in Spain where every part of this sunny country makes its own version of gazpacho.
There, you can find White Gazpacho, which is cooked with garlic, white bread, vinegar, olive oil and, sometimes, with the addition of young tender almonds. White gazpacho is often served with slices of apples or white grapes.
Another kind of gazpacho is Salmorejo from Cordoba which is traditionally made only from tomatoes and bread, without other vegetables, but with the addition of ham, tuna and/or hard-boiled eggs. But perhaps, the most common and famous is the Andalusian gazpacho, which is made with bread, tomatoes and some other vegetables. Cubed or sliced tomatoes, cucumbers, sweet peppers, onions, bread, ham and boiled eggs are served on the side, so everybody is free to create the soup to his liking.
Originally basic gazpacho was made from tomatoes, which are nowadays often substituted with tomato juice.
Gazpacho is the simplest soup to prepare. Basically, if you take all ingredients and blend them in a blender to the desired consistency – it would be gazpacho, a wonderful, sunny and light summer soup.
6-16 servings (6 as a first course, 16 as appetizer)
- 3-4 slices of yesterday white bread
- 1 sweet pepper
- ¾ cucumber
- 2-3 medium tomatoes
- 4 garlic cloves
- 1 tbsp wine vinegar (I prefer aged balsamic vinegar)
- ¼ – 1/ 3 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 quart tomato juice
- Black pepper
- Pinch of cayenne pepper (optional)
Optional for serving:
- 1 tomato, finely chopped
- ¼ cucumber, finely chopped
- ¼ small onion (optional), finely chopped
- ¼ – ½ sweet pepper, finely chopped
- 1-2 hard-boiled eggs, chopped
- ½ cup ham (optional), finely chopped
Roughly cut the bread and the vegetables.
Put the bread into a blender. Pour tomato juice over the bread. Add all the vegetables. Blend until smooth.
Add the olive oil, vinegar, salt, black pepper and cayenne pepper. Blend. (This part could be made the day before).
Serve gazpacho in a soup terrine, or a bowl, or in a pitcher with small bowls of chopped vegetables, croutons, eggs, and ham around.
Gazpacho is well stored in the refrigerator for few days.
Cook with pleasure!