Cascade Park

Cascade Park

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Better than Gazpacho

Gazpacho, a cold tomato soup which originated in southern Spain, is fairly well known here in the United States.  (However, what is served here is often a bright red soup that is quite different from genuine Andalucian gazpacho.)  There is a variation of gazpacho which I think is even tastier and easier to make.  It's called salmorejo. 

I had never heard of salmorejo until a trip to Spain that I made in 2004.  I was at a charming sidewalk restaurant in the old town of Seville when I first saw salmorejo on the menu.  I asked the waiter what it was.  He told me that it was similar to gazpacho, so I ordered it.  I loved it, and it is now one of my favorite Spanish recipes.

I was invited to a dinner party which was supposed to be held today.  Since the theme of the dinner was Spain, I volunteered to make salmorejo, even though it is best on a hot summer day.  I made a double batch of salmorejo yesterday, and shortly after finishing I received a phone call.  Unfortunately the dinner party had been cancelled.  Oh well, I had plenty of salmorejo all for myself!

The soup is generally garnished with Spanish "serrano" ham and hard boiled egg.  I had not boiled the eggs before I got the phone call, but I did have the closest thing to "serrano" ham that you can find around here... prosciutto. 

So here is my salmorejo...

The soup is very thick and has a velvety texture.  It tastes just like the salmorejo that I had years ago in Seville.
On this blog I have described many delicious meals that I have had on my travels.  However, I have never shared with you any recipes.  So here is the easy recipe for authentic salmorejo...
Approximately 2 pounds of ripe tomatoes  (I use plum tomatoes.)
1 clove of garlic, chopped
1 full cup of bread crumbs  (I have used dried bread crumbs in the past, but this time I used slices of Italian bread which I toasted lightly and then tore up.)
Approximately 1 cup of extra virgin olive oil
Red wine vinegar (Some recipes call for Spanish jérez -sherry- vinegar.  I found a bottle of imported jérez vinegar in the grocery store, but when I saw the price of $23, I decided that ordinary red wine vinegar was good enough!)
Put the tomatoes (you don't have to skin them!) and garlic in an electric blender and blend them together.  (Depending on the size of your blender, you might have to do this in 2 batches.)  Add the bread crumbs and blend some more.  Gradually blend in the olive oil.  Season to taste with a splash of vinegar, a pinch of sugar and salt.  Blend at high speed for 2 minutes.  Refrigerate.
Serve cold with a garnish of ham and hard boiled egg.
¡Buen provecho!


  1. So you're a cook too!!! Cool!

    I'd never heard of Salmorejo until I opened your blog post. Sounds interesting, except for the bread crumbs. So no cooking at all? Interesting.

    I'll bet it tastes better in a Spanish sidewalk café than in one's own home, though.


    Kim G
    Boston, MA
    Where we just made fried chicken on a whim. No grape soda, though. Just an ice-cold Rob Roy.

    1. No cooking at all. The bread (and bread is an ingredient in proper gazpacho andaluz also) gives it a creamy taste and a velvety texture. A sidewalk café in Sevilla is, of course, a better setting, but this recipe is just as good as what I have had in Spain.
      P.S. Has your snow melted yet? We had a few flurries this afternoon, but it didn't stick to the ground.

  2. Something new I'll have to try. I love gazpacho, and also cold melon soup on a warm summer day. Salmorejo sounds delightful......

    1. If you love gazpacho, you will definitely love salmorejo!

  3. Thanks for the recipe! I look forward to trying it sometime.

    1. I think you'll like it, and it's very easy to make.