The Ingredient You Should Use To Thicken Gazpacho

Gazpacho is both a refreshing and satisfying meal on a hot day. However, if you've ever tried to make your favorite restaurant version of this cold soup only to wind up with a thin, runny mess of tomato soup, you aren't alone. Luckily, there is an easy way to thicken your gazpacho and it involves the perfect kitchen staple that adds both texture and flavor: bread.

While there are many gazpacho variations, tomatoes, onions, and garlic serve as the base of a classic gazpacho. Of course, there are plenty of other veggies you can add to the mix. From cucumbers to bell peppers, to summer squash, there are lots of options to help you create just the right combo. But when it comes to getting the right consistency, bread is your friend. It serves two purposes in your soup. First, it enhances the texture, and second, it adds structure by absorbing excess liquid and thickening your soup.  

Experiment with bread type

This is the perfect use for stale bread that has become dried out and can readily soak up some of the excess moisture. Simply turn it into bread crumbs which will add a heartiness to this soup thanks to the starch. As a soup heats, those starchy bread molecules absorb the liquid from all the water-rich veggies and in turn thicken it. The resulting texture is going to be velvety smooth, adding a creamy body to your gazpacho. However, it doesn't take an entire loaf to achieve this. Start with a tablespoon and continue to add until it reaches your desired thickness.

Different types of bread will impart different flavors to your gazpacho. Garlic bread will complement the base ingredients used to create your soup. For a bit of a tang, you can use sourdough or even buttermilk cheese bread. And for a more neutral taste, you could use a Panko bread crumb. Experimenting with various bread crumbs will help you find which type is the perfect thickener for your palate.