My Fire Roasted Gazpacho (Black Gazpacho) is intensely delicious. I make this Spanish chilled soup with fire roasted tomatoes and blistered peppers for a deep rich color and a smokey flavor that is truly unique. Think you don’t like gazpacho? Think again!
It isn’t often I can say I’ve come up with an entirely new recipe…
anyone who’s ever searched on google knows that everything’s pretty much been done, especially when it comes to food. But guess what? I think I’ve come up with a new gazpacho that’s unique and super delish. This beautifully intense gazpacho is inspired by my Fire Roasted Salsa Negra, which is a classic Mexican salsa with a rich dark ‘black’ color thanks to fire roasting the veggies before processing. It occurred to me that I could give gazpacho the same delicious treatment and boy was I right!
The difference between a classic gazpacho and this fire roasted gazpacho is that I’ve taken the main ingredients, the tomatoes and peppers, and roasted them under the broiler ( you can do it on the grill if you like) until they become blackened. But here’s the interesting part ~ I don’t remove those blackened skins, that all goes into the processor or blender to make this rich soup. The fire roasting adds color and lots of smokey flavor.
This recipe is very forgiving, as are all gazpacho recipes…you can use any type of tomato you like, and the peppers are interchangeable too. I used several varieties because I love peppers and I can get so many different kinds here in Los Angeles, but you’ll be able to find substitutes at your regular supermarket. I encourage you to get creative and make this your own.
Sometimes I’ll pack up my gazpacho in individual little jars for lunches or picnics. I also like to serve it this way for barbecues and other outdoor events where everybody can grab their own and go. If you really want to have fun with it you can set up a gazpacho bar and let everyone pick and choose their favorite toppings.
Peppers can be a source of confusion because they come hot, sweet, dried, and canned. In areas of the country with larger Latino populations supermarkets stock all sorts of peppers, but in much of the country the pickings are sparse. I encourage you to use what you can find and don’t stress too much about getting the exact match to my ingredient list. The main thing is that I mixed sweet and hot peppers so my soup has a nice kick.
What are tomatillos?
Again, you may not be familiar with these depending on where you live.
- Tomatillos (means little tomatoes) are fruits native to Mexico. They aren’t tomatoes, but they taste like unripe green ones.
- They come wrapped in papery thin skins, which are removed before eating or cooking.
- The flavor is bright and acidic, and goes well in gazpacho and salsa. They can be used cooked or raw.
- If you’ve had authentic salsa verde, you’ve had tomatillos.
Your veggies are going to look like a hot mess when they come out from under the broiler, but don’t worry, it gets better from here!
Remove stems and seeds and then put them right in the food processor. They’ll process into a smooth consistency in just seconds.
It’s quite a transformation, don’t you think?
How to serve gazpacho ~
- The number one rule of gazpacho is to serve it ice cold. In Spain you’ll sometimes get a little bowl with an ice cube in the middle!
- Offer gazpacho in relatively small bowls or even little glasses. You want it to be refreshing, not overwhelming.
- Garnish the top with very finely diced or minced veggies like cucumber, peppers, or red onion.
- A bit of fresh green like mint, cilantro, or any other fresh herb is a nice finish.
- Drizzle a little extra virgin olive oil over your soup.
- Finish with a shower of fresh cracked black pepper.
- You can find some fun inspiration for topping ideas in my Heirloom Tomato Gazpacho post.
Fire Roasted Gazpacho (Black Gazpacho) ~ this unusual Spanish chilled soup is made with fire roasted tomatoes and peppers for a deep rich color and a smokey flavor that is truly unique. Think you don't like gazpacho? Think again!
- 3 dried guajillo chiles (your supermarket should carry them, just ask. Substitute another dried chile pepper if you like)
- 4 large tomatoes, any variety
- 2 pasilla or poblano peppers
- 2 hot peppers such as jalapeños or cayenne
- 2 large Anaheim or Hatch chile peppers
- 6 tomatillos, papery skins peeled (don't worry if you can't find them)
- 1/2 small red onion
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 Tbsp Sherry vinegar
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/4 cup finely chopped cucumber
- 1/4 cup finely chopped red onion
- 1/4 cup finely chopped yellow bell pepper
- fresh mint or cilantro leaves
- olive oil
- black pepper
- Cover the dried chiles with boiling water and let sit for 30 minutes to soften and rehydrate.
- Cover a baking sheet entirely with foil. Arrange the tomatoes, peppers, and tomatillos on the pan, leaving space between each. (Leave everything whole.)
- Set your oven rack to the highest setting and broil the veggies on high for about 20 minutes, or until blackened. I give them a turn every 5 minutes or so.
- Drain and quickly blister the dehydrated peppers, they won't take as long, so watch them carefully.
- Meanwhile process the onion and garlic until the onion is finely minced. Put in a large mixing bowl and set aside.
- Put the blackened tomatoes and tomatillos into the food processor and pulse/process until they're smooth. Scrape down the sides of the bowl if necessary. Pour into the bowl with the onions.
- Remove the stems and any large seeds or veins from all the peppers and chop them in quarters. Do not remove skin. Add to the processor, in batches if necessary, and pulse/process until smooth. Add to the mixing bowl with the tomatoes etc.
- Blend everything together in the bowl, and add the olive oil, vinegar, and salt. Add a little cold water if the mixture seems too thick. Give it a taste at this point and adjust the seasonings. Cover and chill until cold.
- When ready to serve, taste again to adjust the flavors, add a little more cold water if needed to thin it out. Serve in small bowls topped with the toppings and a little drizzle of oil.
- Gazpacho will keep for several days in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
You can process your veggies completely smooth or, if you prefer, you can leave a little texture in the soup, it's your choice. I like to process the tomatoes separate from the peppers so they can have a slightly different texture.