This is an awesome soup I came across while traveling in Andalusia (southern Spain). It is an answer to Spain’s hot summers. On a hot day this soup can be eaten as a side or as a meal in its own. Different from Gazpacho this experiment is full of tomato and olive oil goodness.
Salmorejo (Cold Spanish Soup)
- Tomatoes – 6, medium
- Garlic clove – 1, small
- French bread – half loaf, day or two old or laid out to dry for a few hours
- White vinegar – 2 tbsp, or more to taste
- Extra virgin olive oil – 4 tbsp
- Salt – to taste
- Grated beet, moong sprouts, boiled egg, bacon, chives – to garnish
- French bread – to serve
- Large pots – 2, to blanch the tomatoes
- Slotted spoon
- Bowls, spoons to serve
- Make a light ‘X’ shape cut on the bottom of the tomatoes, just enough to break the skin. Prepare one pot with ice cold water and the other with regular water.
- Boil the pot that contains the regular water. Once the water is boiling drop the tomatoes in the water for 2 mins and quickly remove using a slotted spoon and drop them in the cold water.
- In a couple minutes remove the tomatoes and start peeling them, starting at the ‘X’ marks. The skin should come off fairly easily.
- If you are feeling lazy, skip the blanching (steps 1-3) and just start here. Cut the tomatoes into fours and drop them in the blender. Add the garlic clove, vinegar, salt and blend. Once the tomatoes are roughly blended add the olive oil and blend until the mixture is smooth.
- Now start adding chunks of the bread to the blender, 4 – 5 one inch cubes at a time and blend. Keep adding bread and blending until the mixture thickens and looks like it can’t take any more bread. The consistency should be paste like and it shouldn’t flow.
- Taste and adjust salt, vinegar, olive oil. Vinegar will add a sour flavor to the soup. It can be as sour as you like.
- Chill for a few hours and serve in bowls garnished with grated beet, sprouts, boiled eggs, bacon chives, etc.
- Be careful with the garlic. If in doubt go with less garlic. Taste of raw garlic is something that takes some getting used to.
- The soup can he had by itself or accompanied by more bread or light crackers on the side.
- Actually you can go crazy with the garnishes and customize this soup to your own palate. If you want to make this a whole meal choose garnishes high in protein (e.g. eggs, bacon, sprouted lentils).
- If done right, the garnish makes this look like a dish from a fancy restaurant. Go forth and impress the guests!