How to make authentic Cordoban salmorejo

Salmorejo is a dish originating in the Cordoba region of Spain, and is ideal for this time of year in which temperatures begin to rise. Enjoy it with friends as part of the long-awaited de-confinement!

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29 June 2020

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Cordoban salmorejo is one of the most representative dishes of the Andalusian city, along with oxtail and flamenquines. This soup, which is usually consumed as a first course in the hottest months of the year, is made using a mashed bread crumb to which garlic, olive oil, vinegar, salt and tomatoes are added. Salmorejo is usually served with ham shavings and crumbs of hard-boiled egg. Due to its consistency, it is sometimes also served as a sauce to accompany other foods.


Right back to its origins, salmorejo has always been a modest dish in the context of the local gastronomy, linked to the very humblest classes. In fact, the hard-boiled egg and serrano ham that are added as part of the presentation were not included in the original recipe. Salmorejo is a very healthy and complete dish thanks to its ingredients: bread - a fundamental ingredient - provides carbohydrates, olive oil provides healthy fats and tomato provides lycopene, a natural antioxidant. The latter is also a great source of fibre, minerals and vitamins.

The origins of Cordoban salmorejo

The first known written reference to salmorejo is in the Dictionary of Authorities of 1737. There it is described as a kind of sauce with which rabbit stews were seasoned. The predecessor of the salmorejo is considered to be Mazamorra, another very similar Cordoban recipe that is said to have been a staple food for the Roman troops and which is made with breadcrumbs, raw almonds, extra virgin olive oil, garlic, vinegar and salt. Tomato was the last ingredient to be incorporated into salmorejo. This was not until after the arrival in Spain of the tomatoes that Christopher Columbus brought  from America, since until then the tomato was purely an ornamental plant.

Tomato was the last ingredient to be incorporated into salmorejo.


Step by step recipe for Cordoban salmorejo


Ingredients:

1 kg ripe tomatoes
 200 g bread
 100 g extra virgin olive oil
 1 clove of garlic
 10 g salt


Method:


1. Wash the tomatoes and remove the woody part. Cut into pieces, put them into the mixer and process well.
2. Add the bread in pieces along with the peeled garlic and blend again.
3. Add the salt and continue blending.
4. Add the extra virgin olive oil and blend again. Adjust salt if necessary.
5. Let it rest for about 30 minutes in the fridge.
6. Serve, adding a little crumbled hard-boiled egg and some small pieces of ham, along with a slug of extra virgin olive oil.


Hints:


- A trick when preparing Cordoban salmorejo in the traditional way is to leave the tomatoes out of the fridge the night before.
-If we like a more acid flavour, we can add a little vinegar to the salmorejo.
-The recipe can be prepared by hand, with a large container and a mortar. The first thing to do is mash the garlic with a little salt, add the peeled tomatoes and continue mashing, then add the crumbled bread and continue mashing until all the ingredients are brought together. Finally, add the extra virgin olive oil.

Salmorejo is the star dish of Cordoban cuisine and one of the most emblematic dishes of Andalusian cuisine more generally. Although it can be enjoyed at any time of the year, Cordoban salmorejo is perfect for the summer, as it is a refreshing dish and is very easy to prepare.