A new study says that dishes like gazpacho - a cold Spanish soup containing raw vegetables, bread, olive oil and vinegar - lose ingredients' vitamin C content as well as other organic acids during preparation.
The study examined gazpacho, one of the most popular Spanish summer dishes, comparing the levels of vitamin C (ascorbic and dehydroascorbic acid) and other organic acids (citric, oxalic, fumaric, malic and glutamic) found in each of the ingredients separately before preparation and in the resulting gazpacho.
"We found that the gazpacho showed a lower ascorbic/dehydroascorbic acid ratio than the vegetables used to prepare it," explained Elena MarĄa RodrĄguez, co-author of the study conducted by the Complutense University of Madrid and the University of La Laguna (Santa Cruz de Tenerife).
"This suggests that some of the vegetables' antioxidant capacity is lost," she added.
The authors therefore recommend eating gazpacho as soon as it has been prepared, or "preserving it correctly so that the vegetables maintain their antioxidant characteristics."