A cup of healthful gazpacho soup is great not just in the summer, but all year round, thanks to its rich Mediterranean tastes. While gazpacho is best produced in the summer when the tomatoes and other raw ingredients are at their peak, the only way to enjoy it at other times of the year is to freeze it.
So, sure, you can freeze gazpacho soup to enjoy a taste of summer all year. Smooth gazpacho freezes and thaws nicely and retains its freshness, although chunkier varieties lose texture throughout the freezing and thawing process.
To make it easier to freeze your gazpacho, I describe how to prepare it for freezing, how to defrost it, and a variety of other gazpacho-related topics in this article!
Just Exactly What is Gazpacho Soup?
Gazpacho is a raw tomato-based soup that is typically eaten cold, however it may be served hot in certain regions of Spain.
Gazpacho may be served as a snack, an appetizer, or even as a side dish. It may also be consumed with tapas. You may add a hardboiled egg, shrimp, salmon, or tuna for protein, or a handful of almonds or toasted seeds for nutrition and crunch. A sliced avocado, a few bits of feta, or a dab of sour cream or even nut cream sauce can complement the dish well.
It’s also adaptable; add some spicy peppers, finely chopped onions, and garlic to make a salsa, or cook it with rice and beans in the crockpot for a hearty stew.
The exact origins of this summertime classic are unknown. Some think the Romans invented gazpacho soup, while others say the Moors or Arabs did. It is also influenced by Greek culture. Whatever its origins, it is mainly connected with Andalusia, a Spanish autonomous region.
The term gazpacho may have originated in Greece, although it also has Arabian connotations. It might be derived from the Latin caspa, which means “small fragments,” or from the Hebrew gazaz, which means “to split into pieces.”
Stale bread, olive oil, and garlic were drunk as a soup long before tomatoes were accessible in Spain, and laborers in the Andalusia area were given bread and olive oil as part of their food allotment.
When Moors from Morocco and Turks arrived in Andalusia in the eighth century, they brought with them a similar soup called ajoblanco (literally meaning white garlic), which was cooked with bread, olive oil, garlic, almonds, and occasionally grapes.
There is a significant probability that Christopher Columbus brought ajoblanco with him on his voyages across the world, and when he returned from the New World with new crops like tomatoes and cucumbers, they were added to the soup, enabling it to develop into the present gazpacho.
Gazpacho in Andalusia is still prepared using olive oil and bread, as well as tomatoes, peppers, onions, cucumbers, garlic, and a dash of sherry vinegar.
When Empress Eugenia de Montijo married Napoleon III in 1853, she insisted on gazpacho being served at the wedding, and it was most likely this occasion that introduced gazpacho to people outside of Spain for the first time.
Currently, the term “gazpacho” refers to any cold soup with a vegetable or fruit basis, in addition to the original Mediterranean gazpachos.
The tomato gazpacho is the most popular variant in Seville and across Spain. This is a thick gazpacho with vegetables sliced into the soup or served on top that is sometimes seasoned with cumin.
Salmorejo is a very smooth and creamy gazpacho prepared with tomatoes, olive oil, bread, and vinegar that is famous in the Cordoba region of Spain. It is often accompanied with chopped hard boiled eggs and serrano ham. Salmorejo, since it is a thicker soup, may be served in a communal bowl with various tapas or even eggplant fritters.
The ajoblanco or white gazpacho, which is usually served with grapes, is still available in Malaga and nearby regions. There are additional variations of gazpacho, such as green gazpacho, which is created mostly with green components.
In Spanish, gazpacho is also commemorated with the slogan De gazpacho no hay empacho, which translates as You can never have too much of a wonderful thing!
Tips for Making A Great Gazpacho!
While creating traditional gazpacho, you may choose to use fresh materials from a local farmers market rather than a supermarket. However, the generic tomatoes sold in supermarkets often lack the depth of taste and sweetness required in gazpacho.
When selecting tomatoes, opt for heritage kinds, and adding yellow and green tomatoes to the gazpacho will add taste and color.
(Photo by Thomas Q; Unsplash.com)
Before making the soup, peel the tomatoes and remove the seeds. Certain recipes may call for English cucumbers, which have thinner skins and may not need peeling before use.
If you prefer to use organic food, be sure to thoroughly wash everything before creating raw gazpacho.
Throughout the summer, if you have the room, you may also produce your own tomatoes, cucumbers, and peppers.
To enable the flavors to show through, the tomatoes for gazpacho are best used when completely ripened, which is why freezing is the perfect method to guarantee that you can enjoy a cup of this refreshing soup at any time of year.
You may use gluten-free bread or quinoa or ground almonds for the bread in gazpacho. You may be able to reduce carbohydrates by eliminating the bread from the gazpacho and instead topping it with a few handmade seeded whole grain bread croutons, depending on the recipe.
Using top quality extra virgin olive oil (EVOO) and Spanish sherry vinegar, as well as good quality fresh ingredients, can assist to guarantee that the gazpacho has the maximum flavor.
How Long Will Gazpacho Keep for in The Refrigerator?
Gazpacho will keep in an airtight jar in the refrigerator for about three days. While gazpacho has acidity from the tomatoes and sherry vinegar, the fact that it often incorporates bread reduces its storage life.
All About Freezing Gazpacho
Gazpacho will keep in the freezer for three to six months at its finest.
The finest gazpacho to freeze is smooth. A chunkier gazpacho will freeze, but the texture will be less appealing when defrosted since it is prepared with cucumber and other high-water-content components. When cucumber is frozen, ice crystals develop within it, causing it to become mushy when defrosted. Bigger bits of bread in the soup will provide an unusual texture when thawed.
If you want to freeze a chunkier gazpacho, be prepared to thoroughly mix it once defrosted. Note that you may always add extra diced veggies before serving.
Additionally, avoid freezing a gazpacho that includes dairy ingredients like cheese; instead, add them after it has thawed. If you’re preparing a large amount for the freezer, go light on the garlic, since frozen garlic becomes more fragrant over time.
How Do You Freeze Gazpacho?
If you make a big batch of gazpacho, the best method to freeze it is to split it out into smaller portions, so you only need to thaw enough for one meal.
Airtight glass containers are best, although Ziplock bags will suffice. If you prefer to use bags, fill them and place them flat on a baking sheet covered with parchment to freeze. After the cookie sheet has frozen, remove it from the freezer and stand the bags up for longer term storage.
Make sure there is enough room in the container or bag you use since the soup may expand somewhat as it freezes.
Remember to put the freezing date with a Sharpie on the container or bag so you always know how long it has been in the freezer.
Avoid using plastic containers for gazpacho because tomatoes discolor plastic and the garlic fragrance may also saturate the material. If you do use plastic and scents have been absorbed into it, soak it in two cups of boiling water, a half cup of white vinegar, and a spoonful of baking soda for a few days.
How To Defrost Gazpacho
Since gazpacho is a raw and cold soup, do not defrost it in the microwave unless served hot.
It is normally easier and safer to thaw gazpacho overnight in the refrigerator, but if you forget to take it out the night before, you may part-thaw it on the counter and then continue defrosting it in the refrigerator.
Even smooth gazpacho might have a less-than-appealing consistency when defrosted. This can easily remedied by blending it briefly with a food processor or immersion blender before serving.
When ready to serve, top with any desired toppings such as chopped vegetables, hardboiled eggs, shellfish, or other ingredients.
Well, as we’ve shown in this piece, you can freeze gazpacho soup to enjoy a taste of summer all year. In fact, since gazpacho is best prepared in the summer when tomatoes are ripe and delicious, you’ll have to freeze part of it if you want to enjoy it for longer.
I hope you’ve liked reading this gazpacho article and that you’ve learned a few things about how to prepare and freeze gazpacho along the way.