Ajo Blanco with Crab and Green Grapes

Chef Katie Button’s version of this classic Spanish soup is jaw-droppingly silky thanks to her homemade almond milk. The crab adds a Southern twist.

  • Active:
  • Total Time:
  • Servings: 6
  • Time(Other): plus overnight soaking


  • 1 1/4 pounds raw almonds (3 1/2 cups)
  • 7 cups cold water
  • 1 packed cup cubed (1 inch) crustless country bread
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 2 tablespoons sherry vinegar, plus more for seasoning
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt, plus more for seasoning
  • 3/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 8 ounces lump crabmeat
  • 18 green grapes, halved

How to make this recipe

  1. In a food processor, pulse the almonds until finely chopped. Transfer to a large bowl and add the water. Mix well, cover and refrigerate overnight.

  2. Working in 2 batches, puree the almonds with their soaking liquid in a blender until smooth. Strain the almond puree through a fine sieve, pressing on the solids. Discard the solids. You should have about 6 cups of almond milk. (If you don’t have enough, add cold water to make 6 cups.)

  3. In a blender, combine 3 cups of the almond milk with 1/2 cup of the bread cubes, 1 garlic clove, 1 tablespoon of the vinegar and 1 teaspoon of the salt. Puree until smooth. With the machine on, slowly drizzle in half of the oil. Transfer the soup to the large bowl. Repeat with the remaining almond milk, bread, garlic, vinegar, salt and olive oil. Strain the soup through a fine sieve into another large bowl, pressing gently on the solids. Cover 
and refrigerate until very cold, about 4 hours.

  4. Season the soup with salt and vinegar. Spoon the crab and grapes into 6 bowls, add the soup and serve.

Make Ahead

The soup can be refrigerated for 3 days.


Making almond milk is supersimple, and crucial for this recipe. Be sure to use skin-on raw alonds for the most flavor.

Suggested Pairing

Serve this silky soup with a briny, creamy fino sherry.

Contributed By Photo © John Kernick Published July 2015

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