Chef Time!

Chef Time!

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Soup Or Not To Soup

When it comes to having soup, I prefer having chilled soup rather than hot soup. That way I can have my soup all summer long, even when it’s over 100 degrees outside and the eggs are cooking on the sidewalks.


(Cucumber Soup )
This was the first “cold” soup I ever had. Now I’m hooked.
4 cucumbers
1 ½ tsp. Salt
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 tbsp. Lemon juice
6 c. plain yogurt
1 tbsp. Dill, finely chopped
¼ c. sesame or olive oil
2 tsp. Mint, chopped
    Peel cucumbers, cut into quarters lengthwise, scoop out the seeds and then slice thin. Sprinkle with salt and let stand for 15 minutes. Drain well. Stir together the garlic, lemon juice, yogurt and dill. Mix with cucumbers. Pour the oil over the top and sprinkle with the mint. Serve at room temp.

chocolate soup
Chocolate Soup
When I first heard of this type of soup, I knew that I had to give this a try.
4 c. light cream
5 ½ oz. Chocolate pudding
1/3 c. crème de cacao
2 tbsp. Amaretto
½ c. toasted almond slivers or coconut
In a medium saucepan, combine 3 cups of the light cream and the package of pudding powder. Cook and stir over medium heat until mixture has come to a full boil. Remove from heat. Add the remaining cream, crème de cacao and Amaretto. Heat with the chocolate.
If to be served cold, chill in the fridge overnight or for at least 4 hours. Pour the cold soup into chilled bowls. Sprinkle toasted almonds or coconut over the surface and serve. To serve hot, present I heated bowls and garnish with the almonds or coconut.


Blueberry and Mango Soup
6 c. fresh or frozen blueberries
¾ c. sugar
2 tbsp. Lemon juice
1 tsp. Ground cardamom
¾ c. mango puree
1 c. muscatel, ice wine or honey wine
In a saucepan, combine blueberries, sugar, lemon juice and cardamom. Over medium-high heat, bring mixture to a boil. Cook and stir until sugar dissolves, about 7 minutes. Slightly cool blueberry mixture; transfer to a processor and puree. In a bowl, combine blueberry puree and mango puree with the wine. Strain mixture through a fine sieve and chill.
Serve: Ladle soup into shallow soup bowl or desert dishes. Garnish with fresh blueberries and/or mango slices.

Watermelon Soup

Watermelon Soup with Feta
9 c. diced seedless watermelon
2 tbsp. chopped spearmint
1 tbsp. chopped cilantro
2 c. diced pineapple
1 tbsp. organic honey
¼ c. sparkling water
8 tsp. crumbled feta
8 whole spearmint sprigs
In a medium-sized bowl, combine 1 cup of the watermelon with the mint and cilantro and set aside.
In a blender, pulse the remaining watermelon, pineapple, honey, and sparkling water until smooth. (If your blender is small, work in batches).
Using a mesh strainer, strain the soup into a large bowl or soup tureen, and then serve into 8 bowls. Top each bowl with 1/8 cup of the reserved watermelon mixture and a teaspoon of the feta. Garnish with mint.

Tiered Tomato Soup
Tiered Tomato Soup
2 lb. ripe tomatoes
3 to 4 tbsp. white wine vinegar
2 firm-ripe avocados (8 oz. each)
¾ c. fat-skimmed chicken broth
¼ c. sour cream
3 tbsp. lime juice
1 cucumber (12 oz.)
3 tbsp. minced shallots
1 tsp. minced fresh tarragon
Rinse and core tomatoes; cut into chunks. Whirl in a blender or food processor until smooth, then rub through a fine strainer into a bowl; you should have about 3 cups. Discard residue. Season purée to taste with 2 to 3 tablespoons vinegar and salt. Cover and chill until cold, at least 1 hour.
Peel and pit avocados; cut into chunks. In a blender or food processor, whirl avocados, broth, sour cream, and lime juice until smooth. Add salt to taste. Cover surface with plastic wrap and chill until cold, at least 1 hour.
Peel cucumber; cut in half lengthwise and scoop out and discard seeds. Dice cucumber into 1/8-inch pieces; you should have about 1 cup. In a small bowl, mix cucumber, shallots, 1 tablespoon vinegar, and minced tarragon. Cover and chill until cold, at least 30 minutes.
To serve, stir avocado mixture to blend and pour equal portions into glasses (12 to 16 oz. each). Whisk tomato mixture to blend and gently pour over avocado. Top with diced-cucumber mixture. Clear, straight-sided glasses or wineglasses show off the layers of color best, but large martini glasses also work. You can also use soup bowls and keep the layers a surprise.

creamy red pepper soup

Creamy Chilled Red Pepper Soup
A creamy chilled roasted red pepper soup for summer. Cold bell pepper soup can be served as a light appetizer soup or to accompany a light lunch, perhaps with some salad and a roll. If you like roasted red peppers, try this vegetarian summer soup.
4 red peppers*
1 onion, chopped
2 tbsp. butter or margarine
1 tbsp. chopped fresh rosemary
5 c. vegetable broth
¼ c. tomato paste
½ c. cream
¼ tsp. paprika
Salt and pepper to taste
Heat oven to 400 or set to broil. Slice peppers in half and remove seeds. Broil for about 20 minutes.
In a large saucepan, cook the onion and rosemary over medium high heat. Add the peppers and vegetable broth and reduce to a simmer. Add tomato paste and allow to cook for at least 20 minutes.
Transfer soup to a blender or food processor and process until smooth.
Add remaining ingredients and stir to combine well.
Serve chilled.
*Chef’s notes: You can substitute the red peppers and use either yellow or green peppers instead.


Chilled Tuscan-Style Tomato Soup
The lush summer flavors of Tuscany shine in this refreshing, easy-to-make cold tomato soup. We blend cubes of country bread in with the tomatoes, giving this soup a thicker body and a velvety mouth-feel.
1 tsp. olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
2 c. (1-inch cubes) country-style bread
3 lb. ripe tomatoes, each cut into quarters
¼ c. (loosely packed) fresh basil leaves, chopped
Additional basil leaves, for garnish
1 tsp. sugar
½ tsp. salt
In small skillet, heat oil on medium until hot. Add garlic and cook 1 minute, stirring. Remove skillet from heat.
In food processor with knife blade attached, pulse bread until coarsely chopped. Add tomatoes and garlic; pulse until soup is almost pureed. Pour soup into bowl; stir in chopped basil, sugar, and salt. Cover and refrigerate until well chilled, at least 2 hours or overnight. Garnish each serving with basil leaves. Makes about 6 cups.


Chilled Roasted Pepper-Mango Soup
If fresh, ripe mangoes aren't available, look for refrigerated mango slices in your grocer's produce section.
3 large yellow bell peppers, seeded and quartered
2 large mangoes, peeled and cut into chunks (about 2 ½ c.)
1 c. mango nectar
½ c. vegetable broth
2 tbsp. fresh lime juice
1 tbsp. grated fresh ginger
1 to 2 tsp. hot sauce
2 tbsp. rice vinegar
½ tsp. salt
Sour cream
Garnish: Fresh mint
Place bell peppers on an aluminum foil-lined baking sheet. Broil 5 inches from heat 15 minutes or until blistered. Place bell peppers in a large zip-top plastic bag; seal and let stand 10 minutes to loosen skins. Peel peppers, discarding skins.
Process peppers and mango in a blender or food processor until smooth. Add mango nectar and next 6 ingredients; process until smooth*. Cover and chill mixture 2 hours. Top with sour cream, and garnish with fresh mint, if desired.
*Chef’s note: If desired, press mango mixture through a wire-mesh strainer, using back of a spoon to squeeze out liquid. Discard pulp and solids. Straining and discarding solids yields less volume but makes a very smooth soup.

Chilled peach soup

Chilled Peach Soup
Serve this refreshing summer soup in cups or bowls, garnished with fragrant sprigs of mint. Substitute freshly squeezed orange juice for the apple juice, if you like.
6 large ripe peaches
2 cups water
1 cup apple juice
1/4 cup honey
Zest and juice of 1 lime
Salt and pepper to taste
Mint sprigs
Bring a medium pot of water to a boil. Cut a small "X" through the bottom of each peach, then drop them into the water to blanch for 20 seconds. Using a slotted spoon, transfer peaches to a bowl of ice water. When peaches are cooled, drain well then peel them, starting from the "X" at the bottom of each peach. Discard skin and pits and transfer peaches to a blender.
Add water, apple juice, honey, lime zest and juice, salt and pepper and blend until smooth. Transfer to a bowl, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until well chilled, about 2 hours.
Pour soup into bowls or cups, garnish with mint and serve.


Chilled Cream of Tomato Soup
Cold soups are great for hot summer days or during the winter months you can heat this up on your stovetop. This raw food is full of valuable nutrients.
3 ripe tomatoes (seeded and chopped)
¼ c. water
½ tsp. crushed garlic (1 clove)
¼ tsp. onion powder
¼ tsp. Sea salt
½ ripe avocado, chopped
1 tbsp. Extra Virgin Olive Oil
2 tsp. minced fresh Dill or Basil
Place the tomatoes, water, garlic, onion powder, and salt in a blender and process until smooth. Add avocado and olive oil and blend again until smooth. Add the dill weed and blend briefly, just to mix. Serve immediately or chill in refrigerator.

Chilled Cream of Beet Soup
Sweet beets combine with creamy avocados for this alluring, satisfying, and not to mention stunningly-colored soup.
4 medium beets
1 avocado, chopped
1 lime, juiced
2 c. water
3 tbsp. hemp seeds
1 tbsp. ground coriander
¼ tsp. sea salt
Fresh cilantro leaves & black pepper for garnish (optional)
Roast: Heat the oven to 350. Trim the beets and remove stems and end. Individually wrap each beet in tin foil. Roast for 1 hour and allow to cool completely. Using a paper towel, rub off the beet skins. Chop coarsely.
Blend: Place the beets, avocado, lime juice, water, hemp seeds, coriander and sea salt in a blender. Blend until completely smooth.
Chill: Place soup into refrigerator, and allow to chill for a minimum of 30 minutes.
Serve: Pour into serving bowls and sprinkle with cilantro and black pepper if desired.

blueberrysoup_large (1)

Chilled Blueberry Soup
1 c. (13 oz. jar) Blueberry Jam
1 c. heavy cream (or light if you prefer)
2 tbsp. Chardonnay (or similar white wine)
2 tbsp. lemon juice
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
¼ c. water
A dash of cinnamon
Heat the Blueberry Jam over low heat in a medium sauce pan until melted. Transfer jam to a medium bowl.
Add the remaining ingredients to the jam and mix until uniform.
Chill in the refrigerator. This soup can be made a day in advance.
Stir before serving and add a little more water if too thick.

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