Gazpacho variations add elegance to summer menus

GREEN GAZPACHO: Is sure to make mouths water.

AFTER spending a few summer days in Spain one will undoubtedly have sampled various versions of its classic summer soup, gazpacho.
It’s the perfect dish for sweltering summer days: healthy, refreshing, filling and thirst-quenching.
Along the Costa del Sol, the traditional recipe is a tried and true favourite; however, this delicious fresh cold soup can be adapted to impress even the most discerning of palates.
The term gazpacho, which simply refers to cold soup, traces back to thrifty peasants who had to make the most of left-over vegetables and bread that was a day old.
The most typical recipe today calls for fresh veggies – tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers and garlic – a chunk of bread and a generous splash of olive oil and sherry vinegar, all thrown together in the blender and liquefied.
For a fresh approach, why not spice it up with a bit of experimentation? Instead of tomatoes, perhaps use watermelon or strawberries, thus maintaining the rosy hue but surprising guests with a touch of sweetness. For a tangier version, try green tomatillos or unripe red tomatoes, while for spicier dishes, consider jalapeno peppers or grated ginger.
Not as well-known in Spain but sure to make mouths water, green gazpacho is a delightful addition to the menu.
Sweet and smooth, this variation calls for green-skinned Spanish melons, plus other green-hued vegetables, fruits and herbs, such as cucumbers, grapes and mint.
Yoghurt or sour cream also adds an especially smooth touch to this version.
When serving these summer soups, remember to serve them chilled and think about presentation.
A dollop of sour cream and sprinkling of herbs make for an especially pretty garnish, and best of all, it tastes even better than it looks!

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