Sopa De Ajo Is The Spanish Soup You Need To Meet

Looking at creamy gazpachos and hazelnut soups generously spiked with truffle oil which are popular on restaurant menus of late, it's hard to think of soup as anything but a hearty course that precedes an appetizer. Several soups that are now prepared with luxurious ingredients, however, had more humble beginnings.

Minestrone soup, for example, was invented during a time of food scarcity in post-World War Italy where any vegetables available were communally cooked in a salty broth at city squares to fill hungry bellies (via Slurrp). Even the sophisticated French onion soup — despite its muddled history — is believed to be a poor man's food with just broth, onions, bread, and jus when stripped to its bare bones (via Vice). There's also another soup with a modest origin that you should consider meeting: Sopa de Ajo.

Sopa de Ago is a Spanish soup that also goes by the name of Castilian Soup and Sopa Castellana because of its origin which can be traced back to the region of Castile in Spain (via Veggie Desserts). Interestingly, however, Sopa de Ago is more popularly also known by another name: garlic soup. If you belong in the category of people that don't believe such a thing as too much garlic exists, Sopa de Ago is a Spanish soup that you wish you'd known about sooner.

Sopa de Ago is every garlic lover's dream

Sopa de Ago may look a tad different today, but the soup can essentially be broken down into a handful of key ingredients. All that the soup really needs is water, paprika, stale bread, and a whole lot of garlic which, Bosco Fine Foods explains, is a sign of its humble origin. Some believe that Sopa de Ago was invented after the Spanish Civil War when food was hard to come by and stale bread was a major source of sustenance. Others insist that Spanish shepherds must be credited for Sopa de Ago who relied on the soup's flavor and nutrition on tight budgets in cold seasons (via Veggie Desserts).

Regardless of how Sopa de Ago came to be, one thing is for certain: the use of garlic is not only a delight for the tongue, but it's also an excellent soup to warm up with on cold nights when you're feeling a tad the weather. Garlic is known to help ease the symptoms of flu as well as prevent it entirely if you eat at least one garlic clove with each meal (via Healthline). Luckily, Sopa de Ago is a soup that has plenty of it!

Chef José Andres recommends 10 cloves of garlic for four servings of soup and throws in a few eggs as well (via Saveur). There's also the option of adding herbs and ham or even keeping the soup entirely vegetarian (via Gimme Some Oven). As long as you have the garlic (and a lot of it), there's room to experiment with Sopa de Ago.