Friday, 18 July 2008

Summer Snacks: White Gazpacho and Sparkling Wine

White Gazpacho isn't actually a Gazpacho at all although it hails from Spain – and is chilled. It is Ajo Blanco Malagueño'' and comes from Málaga and Granada. Ajoblanco literally means "white garlic" and the soup is made principally with almonds, bread, garlic, vinegar and oil with grapes floating on its surface. It's a chique soup and is a beautiful luminous warm white colour.

Ajoblanco

150g almonds
Garlic – as much as you prefer
100 ml extra virgin olive oil
2 tbsp sherry vinegar
200 g bread, crusts off
saltcold water
grapes

Grind the almonds in a food processor, add the garlic, bread, salt, olive oil and a drop of water and pulse til you have a paste. Add iced water and pulse again, and then just add water until you have the consistency you like. Ajoblanco can be thin and drinkable, like gazpacho, but there is a school of thought that favours a more spoonable, slightly thicker version. Add the vinegar and chill thoroughly. Serve in soup bowls, scatter the grapes on the soup's surface and drizzle with olive oil.

I think that Cremant d'Alsace (£8.49) would be great with this chilled soup. It's a sparkling wine from Northern France made from Pinot Noir, Pinot Blanc and Pinot Auxerrois grapes which is light and fresh with a dense, very fine mousse lasting to the very last sip in the glass. It has hints of apricots, plums and lime blossom and is very moreish!

Images Courtesy of www.flickr.com

No comments: