Andalusian Tomato and Bread Soup (Salmorejo)
If peak-season, perfectly ripe tomatoes are available, use them in this simple but richly flavored, no-cook chilled soup. Otherwise, Campari or cocktail tomatoes are a good choice, as they are dependably sweet year-round. Excellent results also require high-quality extra-virgin olive oil, so make sure the oil you use does not have bitter or harsh notes. Bread helps thicken the soup and gives it its creamy consistency; choose a crusty, country-style loaf with a relatively soft interior so the bread blends easily into the soup, but remember to remove the crust. To keep the soup chilled for as long as possible at the table, we like to refrigerate the serving bowls.
pounds ripe tomatoes (see note), cored
ounces country-style white bread (see note), crust removed, torn into small pieces (about 1½ cups)
01In a blender, combine the tomatoes, bread, bell pepper, garlic, sugar, vinegar, 2 teaspoons salt and 1 teaspoon pepper. Blend on high until completely smooth and no bits of tomato skins remain, about 1 minute. With the blender running, gradually add ¾ cup oil. Transfer to a large bowl, then taste and season with salt and pepper. Cover and refrigerate until well chilled, at least 2 hours or up to 4 hours.
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