Thursday, August 4, 2011

Two more cold soups

Jan asked for the apricot-wine soup recipe too.  While I'm at it, I'll include the yoghurt soup recipe I like as well.

serves 5

I've always made the soup with the wine called for, but last week I made it without, because one of the people at the table could not have alcohol.  The soup was still wonderful!  I didn't change anything else--just left out the wine.

2/3 c. dried apricots
2/3 c. peeled, diced tart apple
1 c. water
12 oz.  mixture of apricot nectar & orange juice, about half each
1-1/4 c. apple juice
1/2 c. sour cream (light is fine)
2/3 c. chilled dry white wine (can be left out)
mint sprigs

Cook apricots and apple in water covered, until apricots are soft, adding more water if needed.  Purée in blender with the juices and sour cream.
Chill, add wine to taste, and serve with sprigs of mint.  (The mint is both for decoration and for the taste--very nice with the apricot flavor.)
adapted from Craig Claiborne, The New York Times Menu Cookbook
4-5 servings

1/2 cup raisins
3 cups yoghurt (non-fat is fine)
1/2 cup milk (I use skim)
1 hard-cooked egg, chopped (or 2 egg whites)
6 ice cubes
1 cucumber, peeled and chopped
1/4 cup chopped scallions (about 3)
1 t. salt
1/2 t. pepper
1 T. chopped parsley
1 T. chopped fresh dill or 1 t. dried dill

Soak the raisins in cold water for five minutes.
Place the yoghurt in a large mixing bowl and add the milk, egg, ice cubes, cucumber, scallions, salt and pepper.  Drain the raisins and add them to the yoghurt mixture.

Add one cup of cold water and mix well.  Chill for 2 or 3 hours.  Serve garnished with parsley and dill.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

A cool soup for summer

I like making cold soups in summer, and I have a few favorites that I make each year (yogurt/cucumber, apricot/wine, gazpacho).  But today I happened to have extra buttermilk on hand (left over from making scones), and I noticed a recipe in a new cookbook I'd just purchased that would help me use it up.  This soup is great!  I was dubious about the base of buttermilk, which I've only used before in baking.  I'm a convert!  Actually, it's quite similar to yogurt, but with a bit of a tang.

adapted from Vegetarian Meals: Meatless Recipes Everyone Will Love (Good Housekeeping) (NY: Hearst Books, 2006) 
makes about 6 first-course servings

1-2 limes
1 qt. buttermilk (4 cups)
3 medium tomatoes (about 3/4 lb), seeded and cut into 1/4-inch pieces
1 seedless cucumber, chopped in 1/4" pieces (can leave skin on if thin)
1 ripe avocado, cut into 1/4" pieces
3/4 cup chopped cilantro
1/2 t. salt
1/4 t. coarsely ground black pepper

Grate about 1 t. peel from the lime(s) and squeeze to get 2-3 T. juice.
In large bowl, combine peel and juice with the rest of the ingredients.  Cover and refrigerate at least 2 hours.