It’s time for another item on the DC Omnivore 100 list of the top one hundred foods every good omnivore should try at least once in their lives.
With warm weather hitting the area, palates and appetites turn from stews and comfort food to lighter, refreshing dishes in an effort to cool off during the summer. Gazpacho, a cold liquid salad, originating from Andalusia, the southern most region of Spain, is a thirst-quenching option that should definitely be on everyone’s mind.
Typically, Gazpacho includes hard bread, tomato, cucumber, bell pepper, garlic, olive oil, vinegar of wine, onion and salt. However, there are many modern variations of gazpacho, often in different colors and omitting the tomatoes and bread in favor of avocados, cucumbers, parsley, watermelon, grapes, meat stock, seafood, and other ingredients.
A good gazpacho’s viscosity should be a tad short of a thick tomato sauce and the ingredients should be completely blended. And in my opinion, there’s nothing worse than getting a gazpacho that’s watery and filled with cubed peppers. This should be a substantive, cold soup.
Like all soups, or food for that matter, the best gazpacho is made fresh and the day of consumption. However, the bread used should be a few days old so it can provide both texture and absorption properties to the dish.
Locally, tons of restaurant offer solid gazpachos. Sol de Espana in Rockville, Md., headed by former Taberna del Albanero executive chef, offers a thrilling traditional version, while at Rumberos in Columbia Heights, you’ll find a super fresh offering. The various locations of Jaleo also have a solid version of gazpacho, and occasionally serve the white version as well.
The soup is a fantastic, tangy way to start of any meal and is a great way to get some liquid vegetables into your blood stream.