If you’re looking for a great, cold starter look no further than a creamy gazpacho andaluz! This cold tomato soup originates in the southern region of Spain, and it’s a refreshing way to start any meal.
The trick to really letting the tomato flavor shine in this recipe was to salt the tomatoes and let them sit for a little so they released more flavor. To thicken the soup, we naturally used bread (very similar to our creamless tomato soup recipe), and to finish it off we added just a little olive oil and sherry vinegar to add that last bit of bright flavor to this classic starter. Keep reading below for this fantastic recipe…
(makes 6 servings)
- 3lbs (about 6 or so medium) ripe tomatoes, cored
- 1 small cucumber, peeled, halved, and seeded
- 1 medium green bell pepper, halved, cored, and seeded
- 1 small red onion, peeled and halved
- 2 medium cloves garlic, peeled and quartered
- 1 small serrano chile, stemmed and halved lengthwise
- kosher salt
- 1 slice vienne or pane di casa loaf, crusts removed, roughly cut (1 slice of high quality sandwich bread without the crusts can be substituted)
- 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tablespoons sherry vinegar
- 2 tablespoons finely minced cilantro or basil leaves
- Roughly chop 2lbs of tomatoes, half the cucumber, half the bell pepper, and half the onion, and place in a large bowl. Add garlic, chicle, and 1 1/2 teaspoons salt. Toss until well combined. Set aside.
- Cut the remaining tomatoes, cucumber, and pepper into 1/4″ cubes. Place the vegetables in a medium bowl. Mince the remaining onion and add to the diced tomatoes. Toss with 1/2 teaspoon salt and transfer to a fine-mesh strainer over a medium bowl. Set aside for 1 hour.
- Transfer the drained diced vegetables to a medium bowl and set aside. Add the bread pieces to the drained liquid and soak for 1 minute. Add the soaked bread and any remaining liquid to the roughly chopped vegetables and toss thoroughly to combine.
- Transfer half of the vegetable-bread mixture to a blender or food processor and process for 30 seconds. With the blender running, slowly drizzle 1/4 cup oil and continue to blend until completely smooth (about 2 minutes).
- Strain the soup through a fine-mesh strainer into a large bowl and use a rubber spatula to press the soup through the strainer. Repeat with the remaining vegetable-bread mixture and 1/4 cup olive oil.
- Stir in the vinegar, minced herb, and half of the diced vegetables into the soup and season with salt and pepper. Cover and refrigerate overnight or for at least 2 hours to chill. Serve, using the remaining diced vegetables as garnish along with olive oil, sherry vinegar, and black pepper to taste.
Recipe adapted from Serious Eats