Another food memory from our September trip to Spain, this one being a traditional tomato soup from Cordoba called Salmorejo Cordobés. Instead of the gazpacho that I typically have made for decades with a chunky blend of tomatoes, onions, cucumbers, garlic and sweet pepper, this is a velvety smooth tomato gazpacho that has been thickened with bread and served chilled. Being a cold soup, I was hesitant to share it at this time of year, but Ottawa is getting a warm spell this week and the local tomatoes were so ripe and beautiful, I could not resist.
There were many variations of this soup on the Internet and it was difficult to choose the one that emulated what I had in Cordoba. I was inspired by this version of Bon Appetit’s Salmorejo Cordobés from their website. And to keep on the Spanish theme, I found a Spanish olive oil but any extra virgin olive oil with do fine.
Ingredients are few. I substituted panko breadcrumbs for the 2-day old bread rolls suggested and omitted the garnish of ham because I do not eat it and substituted a sprinkling of smoked paprika instead. Below is our soup for two, garnished with grated hard-boiled egg, smoked paprika and olive oil.
My stash of sweet smoked paprika below from a Spanish spice market. You can find it at local grocery and bulk food stores. Make sure you buy ‘sweet’ smoked paprika. The ‘hot’ variety has quite the kick.
Spanish Tomato Soup, Salmorejo Cordobés
Inspired by the Bon Appetit recipe: Salmorejo Cordobés
1/2 cup panko bread crumbs dampened with a tablespoon of water
8 plum tomatoes, halved, coarsely chopped (about 6 cups)
1/3 cup coarsely chopped onion
1/4 red wine vinegar, divided in half
1/2 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 garlic clove, peeled
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, reserving a couple of tablespoons for garnish
2 hard-boiled eggs, shredded
1 teaspoon smoked (or sweet) paprika
- Puree the moistened bread crumbs, tomatoes, onion, one half of the red wine vinegar, lemon juice, and garlic until very smooth. With machine running, gradually add the extra-virgin olive oil. The puree will turn from deep red to slightly orange. If too thick, add a little water. Season with a little salt, if desired.
- Cover and refrigerate for up to two hours or overnight.
- Divide soup among small bowls. Garnish with shredded hard-boiled egg and sprinkle with smoked (or sweet) paprika and a drizzle of the reserved olive oil.