Authentic Spanish Gazpacho
Make this easy gazpacho soup recipe! Inspired by my travels to Spain, it’s cool, refreshing, and totally authentic. So perfect for summer!
Hello again my friend!
I was so excited to finally be back again last time, and then I left you hanging yesterday with no recipe. I’m sorry!
It ended up being a crazy day with so much going on. We had a new garden shed delivered in the morning, and then I had to drive into downtown Philly in the afternoon to pick up our new baby chicks.
We started keeping chickens in our backyard a few months ago, at my youngest son’s request, but sadly they got killed by a raccoon! He was devastated. We all were, really. So we decided to get new ones right away and I found a website that can ship them all year ’round. The new babies are ridiculously cute! I will snap some pics to share soon.
Anyway, after all that, I then had to take my older son to an appointment at the orthodontist. All that running around left not much time to get work done.
But here I am now! I finally got everything wrapped up for this recipe and I think you’re going to love it! It’s one of my absolute favorites, especially at this time of year: Gazpacho!
My husband and I spent our honeymoon in Spain 15 years ago. While we were there, I discovered so many amazing foods that I had never experienced before. Some of the highlights included European-Style Hot Chocolate, Olive Oil Cake, and Churros with Dulce de Leche. Yum!
And when we learned there what REAL gazpacho is all about, I could not get enough of it. Honest to goodness, I ate it every day while we were there. It’s so fresh and cool, and the summery flavors are just out of this world!
And I love the way the Spanish serve it silky-smooth. It has a richness to it that almost makes you think there’s cream in it, but it’s totally dairy-free!
So at this time of year, when our garden is busting out the fresh, seasonal goodness like nobody’s business, we always make a few batches of gazpacho. It’s great to have in the fridge for lunch, a snack, as an appetizer, or for a light dinner.
Plus it’s easy as can be to make! It only takes about 15 minutes to throw together. Now that’s my kind of recipe!
WHAT IS GAZPACHO?
Gazpacho is a chilled vegetable soup that originated in the Andalucian region of Spain.
It’s made with tomatoes, cucumbers, bell peppers, and onion, all blended together with a little bit of bread to thicken it. There’s also olive oil added for richness, and a little bit of sherry vinegar for tang.
It can be served in a bowl, sipped from a mug, or served in shot glasses as an hors d’oeuvre.
Sometimes it’s garnished with chopped fresh vegetables or croutons.
It’s so refreshing in the warm weather months, and can be enjoyed for lunch, a snack, as an appetizer, or a light dinner.
HOW TO MAKE GAZPACHO
To make this easy gazpacho recipe, you’ll need the following ingredients:
- A few slices of crusty bread
- Red Bell Pepper
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- Sherry Wine Vinegar
- Salt, and
- Garlic Powder
I like to use garlic powder because it has a milder, less sharp flavor than raw garlic does, but if you prefer fresh you can just pop in a clove or two.
Start by removing the crusts from the bread. I like to use a crusty, artisan-type bread. If you’d like to make your own, check out this recipe: Crusty French Baguette Recipe.
Place the bread in a dish and pour water over it, then set it aside. This will soften the bread and help it to blend smoothly into the soup.
Next, chop the white ends off the scallions and place the green tops in the blender. I love using scallions because they give a mild, almost sweet onion flavor.
Cut the tomatoes into quarters, then remove the cores and squeeze out the seeds. Seeds will cause your gazpacho to taste bitter, so it’s worth it to take an extra step to remove them.
Peel the cucumber and remove the seeds from it as well.
Cut the bell pepper in half and take out the core, seeds, and membrane. Pop this into the blender along with all the other veggies, and add in the softened bread too.
Olive oil will give your gazpacho the most incredible richness! I like to use a good extra-virgin olive oil (bonus points if it’s from Spain!), to add a nice fruity, peppery flavor.
And my most favorite ingredient: sherry vinegar! Sherry vinegar has a slightly sweet and complex flavor, that really brings out all the best in the seasonal veggies!
Lastly, add in a pinch of sugar, some salt, and the garlic powder, and blend everything up until it’s satin-smooth.
The final step is to strain it through a fine-mesh sieve. Here’s a chef trick: use the back of a ladle to push the mixture through the strainer. It makes really quick work of it!
Chill the soup in the refrigerator for about 2 hours, or until it’s ice cold. The flavors will mingle and meld, and it will be so refreshing to enjoy on a warm day!
HOW TO SERVE GAZPACHO
You can have gazpacho for lunch, as a snack, as an appetizer, or as a light dinner.
I like to spoon it from a bowl or drink it in a mug, but you could also serve it in shot glasses as a fancy hors d’oeuvre.
Personally, I like gazpacho best when there’s nothing to get in the way of it’s silky smooth texture. But it’s not uncommon to garnish it with diced fresh vegetables, toasted bread croutons, or even seafood! It’s fantastic with cold shrimp or jumbo lump crabmeat.
CAN THIS BE MADE AHEAD?
Gazpacho is one of those recipes where the longer it sits, the better it gets.
I think it’s at its absolute best when it’s had a chance to chill in the fridge overnight.
So if you’re planning a party and trying to pace out the prep, this is a great dish to make a day or two before.
HOW LONG WILL GAZPACHO KEEP?
This gazpacho will keep in the fridge (in an airtight container) for about 5 days to a week.
CAN YOU FREEZE IT?
You can totally freeze gazpacho if you have a lot left over! Just thaw it in the fridge overnight before serving.
If you notice it separating, just give it a vigorous stir or shake it up.
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Authentic Spanish Gazpacho
- 3 to 4 slices crusty bread, , crusts removed
- 1/2 cup (118.29 ml) water
- 3 scallions
- 2 medium tomatoes
- 1 cucumber
- 1/2 red bell pepper
- 1/4 cup (59.15 ml) extra virgin olive oil,, plus extra for garnish
- 1 1/2 tablespoons sherry vinegar
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- freshly ground black pepper, (optional garnish)
- fresh chives, (optional garnish)
- Place the bread in a small dish and pour the water over to soak. Set aside.
- Cut off the white part of the scallions and discard, add the green tops to a blender.
- Remove the cores and seeds from the tomatoes, and add them to the blender.
- Peel and de-seed the cucumber, and add it to the blender.
- Remove the seeds and membrane from the bell pepper, and add it to the blender, along with the bread, olive oil, sherry vinegar, sugar, salt, and garlic powder.
- Blend the mixture until smooth, then pour it through a fine-mesh sieve to strain it.
- Chill the soup in the refrigerator until very cold (about 2 hours), then pour into bowls and garnish with a drizzle of olive oil, black pepper, and fresh chives.
SOOOO GOOD! Everyone loved it! I used red wine vinegar because I couldn’t get sherry vinegar. Used fresh crusty bread so didn’t soak it in water. Really easy to make – my 10yr old helped make most of it. Let it sit for 4 hrs in the fridge. Next time I will make a double batch.
I blend tomatoes, strain that using a spatula (instead of a ladle), use English cucumber (with tiny seeds, no need to strain), use no sugar because these ripe veggies are naturally sweet. This is easier than coring tomatoes and losing their juice all over me and my cutting board. The end result is still delicious, less messy and super creamy.