Sopa de Ajo


September 22nd 2011

Spain is one of the largest garlic producing nations in the world, so it’s not surprising that the Spanish make a simple, yet hot and very tasty, garlic soup (sopa de ajo).

stale bread

Sopa de Ajo recipe:

1 pint of homemade chicken stock
8 pieces of garlic (finely chopped)
2 slices of stale sourdough bread (broken into pieces)
lots of olive oil (about a quarter of an inch deep in your saucepan)
1 teaspoon of pimentón dulce (sweet paprika)
1 teaspoon of hot smoked pimentón
a pinch of saffron
salt and pepper to taste
1 egg

This recipe will easily serve two people, in which case an extra egg will be needed.

frying the bread

Break the bread up and fry it in olive oil. You need quite a lot of oil – do remember that olive oil is an ingredient, not just a frying medium – it’s very good for you too! The bread just needs a little bit of cooking on either side (it shouldn’t be browned like fried bread).

bread and garlic

After a few minutes, add the garlic and allow it to take some colour before stirring in the pimentón.


The bread and oil will take on a  distinct red colour.

red bread

Once the pimentón has been thoroughly mixed in, pour on the home made chicken stock,

chicken stock

along with a pinch of saffron.


Spain is also one of the major world saffron producers – it’s actually the stigmas of the saffron crocus and quite an expensive spice.

Simmer the soup for about 15 minutes, by which point the bread should be very soggy. Taste and add salt and pepper if necessary.

poached egg

Break an egg into the soup (traditionally one egg per person) and allow it to poach for a few minutes. You might find that breaking the egg into a large spoon and then lowering the spoon into the soup will ensure that the yolk stays unbroken.

Serve the sopa de ajo when the egg has set – it goes very well with a few croutons.

There are some regional additions to this recipe such as the inclusion of jamón serrano, tomatoes or cauliflower.

About Mad Dog
This entry was posted in Food, Meat, Recipes, Spanish and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to Sopa de Ajo

  1. I love the way you have done this – it has inspired me to try it again. I have only eaten this once at a horrible restaurant in Gaudix – it was water with garlic and a poached egg. Even Big Man said it was vile and tasteless. Yours, on the other hand, looks wonderful, tasty and delicious!

    • Mad Dog says:

      Thanks! I’ve seen some recipes where they suggest water only and I can’t say I fancy that much – at the very least I’d use some vegetable stock if chicken wasn’t available.

  2. Pingback: Ajoblanco | Mad Dog TV Dinners

  3. Pingback: Sopa Seca (Dry Soup) | Mad Dog TV Dinners

  4. Pingback: Tourin à l’ail | Mad Dog TV Dinners

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.