Gazpacho and Summertime Chilled Soups

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I love soup and love to make soup, but I must admit it took a while for me to “warm” up to chilled soups and gazpacho! Cool, refreshing soups can be quite flavorful and hardy especially this time of year and all of the summer bounty available for your recipe. Gazpacho gives us a great way to make a spicy fresh tomato treat and what’s more refreshing than chilled cucumber? Give these recipes a try and see if you can cool down and “warm” up to a Chilled Soup!

Cold Cucumber Soup with Yogurt and Dill

Ingredients

  • 2 large European cucumbers (2¼ pounds), halved and seeded—½ cup finely diced, the rest coarsely chopped
  • 1½ cups plain Greek yogurt
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 small shallot, chopped
  • 1 garlic clove
  • ⅓ cup loosely packed dill
  • ¼ cup loosely packed flat-leaf parsley leaves
  • 2 tablespoons loosely packed tarragon leaves
  • ¼ cup olive oil, plus more for drizzling
  • Salt
  • Fresh ground white pepper
  • ½ red onion, finely chopped

Directions

  1. In a blender, combine the chopped cucumber with the yogurt, lemon juice, shallot, garlic, dill, parsley, tarragon and the ¼ cup of olive oil. Blend until smooth. Season with salt and white pepper, cover and refrigerate for at least 8 hours or overnight.
  2. Season the soup again just before serving. Pour the soup into bowls. Garnish with the finely diced cucumber, red onion and a drizzle of olive oil and serve.

Yields 5 cups.

Spiced Blueberry Soup

Ingredients

  • 4 cups fresh or frozen (not thawed) blueberries, plus more for garnish
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 whole cinnamon stick
  • 2 tablespoons honey, or more to taste
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh ginger
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • ⅓ cup low-fat milk
  • 1 cup 4 teaspoons reduced-fat sour cream, divided

Directions

  1. Combine blueberries, water, cinnamon stick, honey, ginger and cardamom pods (if using) in a large saucepan. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat and simmer, stirring, until most of the blueberries have burst, 1 to 2 minutes. Remove the cinnamon stick. Puree the soup in 2 batches in a blender until smooth (use caution when pureeing hot liquids). Place a fine sieve over the pan and pour the soup through it back into the pan, straining out any solids. (Discard the solids.)
  2. Whisk cornstarch and milk in a measuring cup until smooth. Whisk into the blueberry mixture. Bring the soup to a boil over medium heat, stirring. Boil, stirring constantly, until the soup thickens slightly, about 1 minute. Remove from the heat and let cool for 10 minutes. Transfer to a bowl, loosely cover and chill until cold, at least 5 hours or up to 2 days.
  3. Just before serving, whisk 1 cup sour cream into the soup and ladle into bowls; top each serving with ½ teaspoon sour cream and swirl decoratively into the soup. Garnish with additional blueberries, if desired.

Serves 8. Each serving contains Calories 115, Fat 4 g, Cholesterol 14 g, Carbohydrates 19 g, Protein 2 g, Fiber 2 g, Sodium 21 mg.

Coastline Tomato Gazpacho

Ingredients

  • 3 cups low-sodium vegetable juice, (such as V8)
  • 1 orange bell pepper, diced
  • 1½ cups diced fennel bulb or celery, plus ¼ cup fennel fronds or celery leaves, divided
  • 1 cup diced tomato
  • ⅓ cup finely diced red onion
  • 2 tablespoons red-wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon Old Bay seasoning
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups chopped peeled cooked shrimp
  • 1 avocado, chopped

Directions

  1. Combine vegetable juice, bell pepper, fennel (or celery), tomato, onion, vinegar, oil, Old Bay, pepper and salt in a large bowl. Cover and refrigerate until chilled, at least 2 hours and up to 3 days.
  2. Top each serving of gazpacho with ½ cup shrimp for an entree portion or ⅓ cup for an appetizer serving. Garnish with avocado and fennel fronds (or celery leaves).

Serves 6. Each serving contains Calories 252, Fat 11 g, Cholesterol 68 mg, Carbohydrates 15 g, Protein 22 g, Fiber 5 g, Sodium 462.

Spicy Avocado Cucumber Soup

Ingredients

  • Two 12-ounce cucumbers—peeled, seeded and chopped
  • 2 Hass avocados, coarsely chopped
  • 2 teaspoons Thai green curry paste
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 2 teaspoons finely grated lime zest
  • 1 Serrano chile, seeded and chopped
  • One 13-ounce can unsweetened coconut milk
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • Salt
  • ½ cup unsweetened coconut flakes, for garnish
  • 10 cilantro sprigs, for garnish

Directions

  1. In a food processor, puree the cucumbers until smooth. Add the avocados; curry paste, sugar, lime zest and chile. Process until blended. Add 3½ cups of water, the coconut milk and lime juice and process until smooth. Transfer the soup to a large bowl and season with salt. Cover and refrigerate until chilled, 15 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, in a skillet, toast the coconut over low heat, stirring a few times, until lightly browned and crisp, 3 minutes. Let cool.
  3. Ladle the soup into small bowls or cups, garnish with the toasted coconut flakes and cilantro sprigs and serve.

Serves 10.

Cold Watermelon Soup

Ingredients

  • 5 cups (1.5 pounds) diced seedless watermelon, chilled
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon chopped parsley
  • 2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon corn starch
  • Tabasco
  • Salt

Directions

  1. In a blender, puree the diced watermelon with the fresh lime juice, parsley and extra-virgin olive oil until the mixture is very smooth. Set a fine-mesh strainer over a large bowl and strain the watermelon puree, pressing very lightly on the solids to extract the watermelon juice without pushing the pulp through.
  2. Rinse out the blender and return the strained watermelon juice to it. With the blender on, add the corn starch and blend until slightly thickened, about 15 seconds. Transfer the watermelon soup to a pitcher and season with Tabasco and salt. Refrigerate until the soup is well-chilled, about 20 minutes. Serve the soup in bowls, garnished with parsley

Chilled Melon Soup

Ingredients

  • 6 cups cubed ripe melon
  • ½ cup diced seedless cucumber
  • 6 tablespoons lime juice, divided, plus more to taste
  • 1 tablespoon thinly sliced scallion green, plus 1 whole scallion, divided
  • 1 jalapeño pepper, plus more to taste
  • 1 cup cold water
  • 1 2 by ½-inch strip orange zest
  • ½ cup orange juice, plus more to taste
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh ginger
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped cilantro, or mint for garnish
  • 6 teaspoons plain yogurt, or crème fraiche for garnish

Directions

  1. Dice enough melon to measure 1 cup and combine in a small bowl with cucumber, 2 tablespoons lime juice and scallion green. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve the soup.
  2. Place the remaining melon and 4 tablespoons lime juice in a blender. Chop the whole scallion and seed and chop jalapeño; add to the blender along with water, orange zest, orange juice, ginger and salt. Blend until smooth and creamy. Taste and add more lime juice, jalapeño and/or orange juice, if desired.
  3. Refrigerate the soup until chilled, 2 hours.
  4. Stir the reserved diced melon mixture and divide among 4 soup bowls. Pour the soup into the bowls. Garnish each serving with cilantro (or mint) and yogurt (or crème fraîche), if using.

Serves 6. Each ¾ cup serving contains Calories 63, Fat 0 g, Cholesterol 0 mg, Carbohydrates 16 g, Protein 1 g, Fiber 1 g, Sodium 97 mg.