Try one of three tasty gazpacho recipes, just in time to celebrate National Gazpacho Aficionado Month. (Photos/NBC Latino)

Got gazpacho? 3 perfect recipes for National Gazpacho Aficionado Month

Some of Latin cuisine’s most delicious dishes are the most simple; take gazpacho for example, which combines fresh produce with leftover bread to create a lush, refreshing soup perfect for warm days.

Whether you like a red gazpacho made with juicy red tomatoes, crisp cucumbers and bright green peppers or ajo blanco gazpacho, the earliest version of the Spanish bread soup, made with finely-ground almonds and sweet grapes, there’s a version for everyone, just in time for National Gazpacho Aficionado Month. That’s right: this classic Spanish soup – a humble meal that was first made by peasants with little more than bread, water, garlic, vinegar and olive oil – can be made in any number of ways, and we’re bringing three of our very best recipes to you to try.

White gazpacho.

White gazpacho. (Photo/Betty Cortina)

White gazpacho (ajo blanco) 

The earliest form of gazpacho was made with a base of bread and blanched almonds, as it wasn’t until the 19th century that New World ingredients like tomatoes and peppers were introduced to Spain. It’s a deliciously savory-smooth soup, made slightly sweet with green grapes accented by the crisp, smooth bite of sherry vinegar.

3 1-inch thick slices crusty white bread

1 cup whole blanched almonds, finely ground

1 garlic clove, crushed

1/2 tsp sea salt

1 cup chilled bottled water

1/3 to 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil

2 T sherry vinegar

16 green grapes, for garnish

Toasted almond slivers, for garnish

1. Place the bread in a large bowl. Add cold water to cover. Let it soak for about 5 minutes. Squeeze the water out of the bread. Place the crumbled bread into a blender.

2. Add the almonds, garlic, sea salt and bottled water to the blender and puree until smooth. With the blender running, slowly pour in the olive oil through the feed tube until emulsified. Start with 1/3 cup, and add more if the puree is too thick.

3. Place the puree in a bowl and whisk in the vinegar. If still too thick, add a little more bottled water. Season with more salt if necessary. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours.

4. To serve, place four grapes in a bowl and pour the fully-chilled gazpacho over them. Garnish with almond slivers. Makes 4 servings.

Classic red gazpacho

Classic red gazpacho (Photo/Nina Terrero)

Classic tomato gazpacho

This simple gazpacho allows the flavors of fresh tomato to truly shine and is made special with the classic toppings of diced cucumber, garlic croutons, hard boiled egg and scallions.

4 slices of thick, crusty bread with the crusts removed (Portugese or Italian bread work well)

1 cup water

2 pounds tomatoes, coarsely chopped

2 green peppers, coarsely chopped

1 medium cucumber, peeled and coarsely chopped

1 medium Spanish onion, coarsely chopped

5 large cloves of garlic, peeled

1/2 cup mild Spanish extra virgin olive oil

6 tablespoons white wine vinegar

2 tablespoons sherry vinegar

1 1/2 cups cold water


Optional: Finely-chopped tomato, green pepper, cucumber, hard-boiled egg, garlic croutons (recipe below) and/or scallions.

1. Soak bread in water and squeeze dry; set aside. Place tomatoes, peppers, cucumber, onion, garlic, bread and water in a blender or food processor with olive oil and vinegars.

2. Blend until completely smooth and pass through a fine strainer in a bowl, using a spoon to extract as much liquid as possible from the mixture. Add salt to taste and chill before serving. Serve in bowls with toppings on the side to garnish to taste. Makes 6 to 8 servings.

Garlic croutons recipe

6 slices of thick, crusty bread (Portugese or Italian bread work well here)

6 large garlic cloves, crushed (use the flat side of a knife to crush, or “smash” the garlic on a cutting board)

½ teaspoon salt

5 tablespoons Spanish olive oil

1. Cut bread into 1-inch cubes. Heat a large skillet over medium heat and coat the bottom of the pan with the olive oil. Add the garlic and sauté for about 45 seconds or until fragrant.

2. Add bread cubes to the pan and sprinkle with salt. Cook the bread cubes until golden brown, stirring as necessary to cook on all sides. Serve over gazpacho. Stored in an air-tight container, the croutons will keep fresh for a few days.

Natalie Morales’ “World Famous” gazpacho

TODAY Show news anchor Natalie Morales is many things, among them smart, beautiful and a talented cook. One of her go-to meals just happens to be her “world famous” gazpacho, frequently requested by family and friends thanks to its chunky mix of tomatoes, cucumber and avocado with a dash of hot sauce for added kick. Click here to get the recipe and watch Morales making the gazpacho step by step below.

%d bloggers like this: