Puerto Rican Gazpacho is a delicious codfish salad that’s different from the cold soup version you may know from Spanish cuisine. Gazpacho in Puerto Rico is a light and fresh seafood salad that features salt cod, tomatoes, onion, and creamy avocado.
No, you didn’t read the title wrong. The first time I saw gazpacho on a restaurant menu, I got really excited…until the dish arrived. It was a cold tomato soup! I was like, WTH?! All my life, gazpacho has been a light & refreshing salad composed of flaky salt cod (bacalao), avocado, tomato, onion and olive oil. So you can imagine my surprise when I saw the soup. Puerto Rican gazpacho is a childhood favorite of mine, and is perfect for those nights when you’re just too tired to really cook. This dish is a simple assembly-style dish. The hardest part is waiting patiently to purge the salt cod of its salty coat. Another bonus, this dish is deliciously healthy and light, so feel free to have a couple servings! It’s perfect by itself, or you can serve it alongside rice, or inside a soft baked roll or pita pocket for a delish and portable meal option. Gazpacho is also a great option for Lent!
What Ingredients Are In Puerto Rican Gazpacho?
Puerto Rican gazpacho features salt cod, known Bacalao (pronounced [bah-kah-LAH-oh]). Bacalao is the Spanish term for dried and salted codfish. After the fish has been cleaned and eviscerated, it is salted and dried. It’s then sold whole or in fillets, with or without the bone. Before consuming it, the fish needs to be rehydrated and the excessive amount of sodium reduced by soaking and changing the water several times over many hours.
Once the salt has been removed from the cod, it’s boiled until tender, cooled, and combined with fresh tomatoes, white onion, ripe avocadoes, olive oil, and a splash of vinegar. This dish is super simple, yet packed with flavor.
What To Serve With Puerto Rican Gazpacho?
I grew up eating gazpacho inside of crusty bread, like a Portuguese roll or traditional Puerto Rican pan de agua. You can also serve this dish with white rice and fried plantains (tostones) for a delicious meal that’s packed with the flavors of Puerto Rico.
Want More Puerto Rican Recipes?
Check out these favorites from the Delish D’Lites archives!
- Bacalao Guisado (Stewed Cod Fish)
- Carne Guisada (Puerto Rican Beef Stew)
- Pollo Guisado (Puerto Rican Chicken Stew)
- Slow Cooker Pernil (Puerto Rican Roasted Pork Shoulder)
- Arroz Con Gandules (Puerto Rican Rice with Pigeon Peas)
Gazpacho (Puerto Rican Salt Cod Salad)
- 1 lb of boneless salt cod fillets rinsed and purged of salt
- 1-2 tomatoes chopped
- 1/3 cup white or red onion finely chopped
- 1 Florida avocado peeled and chopped into cubes
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon vinegar
- salt and pepper to taste
Rinse off the salt from the bacalao and soak overnight in water, changing the water 3 times. Place the bacalao into a pot of cold water, and bring to a boil.
As soon as the liquid comes to a boil, drain the salt cod and let it cool.
Once it’s cooled, break the salt cod into big flakes and place in a bowl. Make sure to check for any stray bones.
Stir the chopped avocado, onion, tomato, olive oil and vinegar. Season with salt and pepper and combine.
Serve immediately, or refrigerate for up to 24 hours.
Serve with a side of white rice, or make a sandwich with crusty bread.