Cooled mushroom gazpacho with sherry vinegar, herb oil and croutons
This is how you do it at home
Spanish gazpacho is a cold soup made with cucumber, tomato, garlic, peppers, onions and olive oil. The soup is usually served with croutons, chopped cucumber, peppers and finely chopped onion for everyone to scatter over to taste. This variation on gazpacho, with mushrooms in the leading role, comes with herb oil, croutons and chopped mushroom.
Starter for 4 people
- 6 sprigs each: parsley, dill and thyme
- olive oil
- 2 garlic gloves
- 1 small onion
- 1 large cucumber
- 250g / 9oz mushrooms
- olive oil
- 3 tbsp sherry vinegar
- fine salt, black pepper
- 1/2 French stick
- Pick the herb leaves and whizz them up with 200ml/7fl oz oil. Pour the herb oil into a jug and leave to infuse: the minimum’s an hour, but a few days is even better.
- Peel the garlic and the onion. Peel the cucumber. Finely chop ¼ cucumber and put in a bowl. Cut the rest into chunks and place in a food processor or blender.
- Clean the mushrooms*. Chop 6 mushrooms and put in a bowl. Add the remaining mushrooms to the cucumber in the food processor.
- Add 200ml/7fl oz cold water, 200ml/7fl oz olive oil, the vinegar, garlic and onion to the food processor. Blend until very fine. Add salt, pepper and Tabasco to taste. Leave in the fridge or freezer until very cold.
- In the meantime, cut the bread (with crust) into 1cm/½ inch chunks. Heat a layer of oil in a frying pan and stir-fry the bread pieces until golden. Drain on kitchen paper and put the croutons in a bowl.
- Spoon the gazpacho into large bowls. Drizzle a little herb oil over the soup and serve it with the remaining herb oil, the croutons, chopped cucumber and chopped mushrooms on the side.