Summer soups to satisfy, refresh
Here’s a great way to cool down on a hot summer day or evening.
Serving a refreshing soup prepared with fresh ingredients can be part of a perfect picnic or a wonderful way to have lunch in your garden. These are just a few of the many soups that bring coolness to a perfect summer day.
Cinnamon Peach Soup
(serves four to six)
2 pounds ripe peaches
3 whole cloves
3 allspice berries
3 cardamom pods
2 cups freshly squeezed orange juice
3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
3-4 tablespoons honey or brown sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 cup nonfat yogurt
1 tablespoon diced, candied ginger
sprigs of fresh mint for garnish
Drop the peaches in a pot of boiling water and boil for 30 seconds. Rinse them under cold water and slip off the skins. Pit the peaches and coarsely chop them. Tie the cloves, allspice berries and cardamom pods in cheesecloth (or wrap in foil and pierce with a fork). Combine the peaches, spice bundle, orange juice, lime juice, honey, cinnamon and ginger in a heavy saucepan. The amount of honey needed will depend on the sweetness of the peaches. The sweeter the peach, the less honey. Simmer for 5-10 minutes, or until the fruit is very soft. Remove the spice bundle and let the soup cool to room temperature. Puree the soup in a blender and chill. Just before serving, whisk in the yogurt and candied ginger.
Correct the seasoning, adding honey and lime juice to taste as needed. Serve in glass bowls or wine goblets, garnishing each with a sprig of mint.
Chilled Cucumber Soup
1 large cucumber, peeled
2 teaspoon lemon rind
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 garlic clove, skinned and crushed
2 cups plain yogurt
2 tablespoons chopped chives
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
salt and pepper
Cut 12 thin slices off the cucumber and reserve for garnish.
Chop the rest of the cucumber and put into a blender or food processor with the lemon rind and juice, garlic, yogurt, chives and parsley. Blend until smooth.
Add salt, pepper and paprika to taste.
Chill until ready to serve.
Garnish with reserved cucumber slices.