Savory Vegetable Soups
The king of cold soups is gazpacho. This Spanish soup has multiple variations, but the famous tomato-based gazpacho that originated in Andalucia in southern Spain has its roots in Roman and Moorish cuisines. Made with stale bread, olive oil, garlic, ground almonds and vinegar, this ancient soup is called ajo blanco, a “white gazpacho.” After tomatoes and peppers were brought back to Spain from the New World, they were added to the soup. Today’s versions can be made with tropical fruits, avocados, corn and even watermelon.
Vichyssoise is another cold savory soup that has enjoyed decades of popularity. It was created by a French chef, Louis Diat, at New York’s Ritz-Carlton Hotel in 1917. Made of pureed potatoes and leeks, the soup is enriched with a swirl of cream before serving. Vichyssoise is easy to prepare and makes any meal feel like a special occasion.
Gazpacho and Tomato-Based Soup Recipes
Hearty Hot or Cold Roasted Tomato Soup
- 2 pounds Roma (plum) tomatoes, quartered
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 4 cloves garlic
- 1 quart chicken stock
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
- 1/2 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- salt to taste
- ground black pepper to taste
- Place the tomato halves, cut side up, on a baking tray with the garlic cloves. Drizzle with the oil, and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast at 375 degrees F (195 degrees C) for 1 hour.
- Snip the ends off the garlic cloves, and squeeze the insides into the bowl of a food processor along with the entire contents of the baking tray. Add stock, basil, and vinegar; blend until smooth. Season to taste. Serve either hot or cold.
Chilled Tomato and Avocado Soup
- 1 ripe tomato, peeled and quartered
- 2 large avocados – peeled, pitted, and sliced
- 1 small onion, quartered
- 1 green bell pepper, chopped
- 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
- 1 quart tomato juice
- 1 1/4 cups plain nonfat yogurt
- salt to taste
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh chives
- cayenne pepper to taste
- Place tomato, avocados, onion, green bell pepper, and lemon juice into the bowl of a food processor, and process until smooth. Pour in 1 cup tomato juice, and process to blend.
- Transfer mixture to a large bowl, and mix in remaining tomato juice and 1 cup yogurt. Season to taste with salt. Chill for 2 hours.
- Serve in bowls garnished with dollops of yogurt, chives, and a sprinkling of cayenne pepper.
Tomato Basil Soup
- 4 pounds tomatoes, chopped
- 1/3 cup fresh basil leaves
- 3 tablespoons vinegar
- 2 teaspoons garlic salt
- 3 cups chicken broth
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- In a blender or food processor, combine tomatoes, basil, vinegar and garlic salt. Puree until smooth. Transfer to a serving dish and stir in broth and olive oil. Chill in refrigerator until cold.