Summer’s here and it’s hot. This past week, I’ve had gazpacho in one version or another for lunch every single day. Sometimes a boiled egg or a piece of cheese keeps it company. Sometimes a handful of raw nuts or a slice of prosciutto.
Spanish people say summer’s truly here when you start eating your salad with a spoon. And what better season to indulge in nature’s flavorful bounty than right now, in August, when our CSA basket and garden are more generous than any other time of year! Goodbye boring winter kale (just sayin’).
I spent most of Saturday experimenting with new chilled soup recipes. I’ve had several new ideas marinating and waiting for the right time. I hate that I rarely have time or a kitchen when I travel, because those are my best times to be inspired and create new recipes. From sauces and salsas, to desserts, these four soups have roots in travels, good eats with friends and family traditions from Bulgaria. I hope you enjoy!
Chilled Moroccan yogurt soup with arugula and mint
2 medium slicing cucumbers or 4 persian cucumbers
3 cups of plain whole fat yogurt
1 1/2 cups water
1 cup arugula
4 large sprigs of mint, leaves only
salt and pepper to taste
Slice the cucumbers with a mandolin or use a spiralizer to get thin strips. Place them in a bowl and stir in the yogurt and water. Use a mortar and pestle to finely mash the arugula and mint until you have a pesto consistency green paste. Add that to the bowl. Mix and season with the salt and pepper to taste. Serve with mint leaves and freshly shaved cucumber.
Coconut avocado soup with chili mango
2 large or 4 small Hass avocados
1 large ripe mango
1 green onion
juice of 1 lime
2 cups light coconut milk
salt to taste
chili pepper to taste
dried mango rubbed with chili pepper for serving
Use your blender to mix the avocado, peeled and sliced mango, sliced onion, lime juice and coconut milk. Depending on your produce you may need to add some water to dilute to a nice soup consistency. Blend to a smooth soup and taste. Add as much salt and chili pepper as you like. If needed to balance the taste, drizzle more lime juice.
Chill well and serve with some sliced dried mango. If you can buy or make it with chili powder so it’s evenly flavored with the chili on the outside and you can bite into the soft and chewy inside, it makes a great addition to this soup.
Gazpacho with roasted peppers and olives
5 large or 8 medium ripe tomatoes (Heirloom have the best flavor)
2 roasted peppers (roast in the oven till skin is peeling off)
2 Persian cucumbers
2 green onions
1 clove garlic
4 tbsp parsley
4 tbsp black olives
salt to taste
olive oil and balsamic vinegar for serving
Use your blender to blend the tomatoes, roasted peppers, cucumbers, onion, clove of garlic, the parsley and olives. Blend only for a few seconds so you still have lots of small vegetable pieces. Taste the soup and salt as you like. Pour in bowls, and chill. Right before serving, drizzle olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Sprinkle parsley, dill, oregano, or another green herb on top to make it even better!
Great additions to this soup: hard boiled eggs, crumbled feta cheese, prosciutto, bacon (right?). I try to have some of those on hand for my office lunch and it’s been so satisfying.
Melon ginger and fennel soup
1 small melon, peeled and cubed
1 inch ginger
1 tsp fennel seeds
4 anise seeds
1/4 cup cashews
Himalayan salt to taste
Place all ingredients in a blender and blend till smooth. Chill for 30 minutes and allow the spices to develop their flavor. Serve with some fennel seeds on top and why not some creme fraiche? Salt just a bit right before serving.
We really hope you love these soups and share the recipes with your friends! Eating well starts with you!
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