Garlic Soup: Variations on an Easter Classic

Garlic Soup: Variations on an Easter Classic

It has always been said that hunger sharpens ingenuity: at least in the case of gastronomy, we have proven this to be true. A huge number of recipes that appeared during periods of scarcity left us a legacy worthy of study. The use kitchen is a constant in our culinary culture: everything is useful; bones, stale bread, dried vegetables, tubers, canned meats and, of course, their fat. Juggling, which many women had to do to feed their families, laid the foundation for an entire culinary tradition of wooden spoons. Examples such as garlic soup or Castile soup aim not only to fill the stomach, but also to fight off colds: cooking has always been a means to alleviate the difficulties caused by deficiency.

Garlic soup or Castilian soup seems to come from Castile. However, it has regional varieties throughout Spain, which means its origins are somewhat more confusing. Traditionally based on a broth made with stale bread, garlic and water, enriched with ham or bones, this is the regular version, with pepper and egg usually added in addition. In the Iberian Peninsula, we find differences in the preparation of the recipe: in Soria, for example, it is customary to add mushrooms to the soup; In some parts of Castile, it is customary to finish the soup in the oven, cooking it until all the water has evaporated and a crust has formed. In La Rioja, tomatoes and peppers are added to the broth, and in the Basque Country it is customary to add fish. In Andalusia, cauliflower is added to the boil water and no pepper is added, in addition to the longer cooking time to thicken. Even in Portugal there is a variety in which paprika is also not added and is accompanied by coriander; Each region adapted this dish to the foods they had on hand so as not to waste food.

Despite regional variations, there are even more variations within each of the explained variations. As far as my country is concerned, the version prepared in Malaga is usually light and with a rich broth, while in my city of Coin it is prepared in such a way that a wooden spoon cannot get stuck and fall off. In addition, it is accompanied by typical local products such as oranges, olives. gone and radish. However, anyone looking to make a traditional recipe should just look at the amount of garlic, broth, and bread, but since we’ve researched so many varieties of garlic soup, I’ve put together one that combines what I like from each region. , focusing mainly on Coin and Malaga.


Do not create a new variety by accident


For 2 people

  • 9 garlic cloves
  • 80 g stale bread
  • 800 ml beef, chicken, vegetable broth or water
  • 2 teaspoons sweet paprika
  • Half teaspoon ground cumin
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 1 orange
  • Half a fresh onion
  • 8 radishes
  • 50 g olives gone
  • coriander to taste
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil


  1. Cut the bread into slices (not with a knife), keeping the crust.

  2. Mince six pre-crushed garlic cloves and leave three whole.

  3. Heat oil in a large deep skillet and sauté nine cloves of garlic until they turn brown (medium heat). Add paprika, cumin and bay leaf and stir for a few seconds.

  4. Add bread and toss to coat well with oil and spices. Fry for a minute and add broth or water. Cook for 10 minutes over medium-high heat.

  5. Meanwhile, chop the orange, radish and onion. Prepare olives and coriander leaves.

  6. Serve the soup very hot with the rest of the ingredients separately.

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