Chilled soup is somewhat of a strange concept (at least to me!). It is definitely not a common item on restaurant menus nor is it something that comes to mind when you think of crafting up a quick and nutritious meal. However, with the heatwave this week and a bounty of fresh organic vegetables from Taproot Farm in my refrigerator, a meal like this seemed perfect! I have had chilled soups only a handful of times, notably at restaurants at the beach or in other tropical climates. They are refreshing and surprisingly filling, just like I find a fruit smoothie bowl to be. The only catch is that they are savory in flavor. Different, but very good! I kept this soup very natural in taste profile so you can really savor the fresh cucumber and tomato. A lot of chilled soups will use dill, which I definitely enjoy but also find really takes over from a flavor standpoint. Instead, I opted for basil. If you opt out of making the croutons, I do recommend adding some salt to the soup. The croutons help to fill that flavor void, but without them a touch of salt will help round out the flavors. So, if you are feeling creative or in the mood to try something new, I highly recommend giving chilled soup a go! Enjoy! 🙂
Chilled Soup of Cucumber, Heirloom Tomatoes, Basil, Garlic, Cream Cheese, Sour Cream, Chicken Stock and Olive Oil, Topped with Homemade Croutons, White Truffle Oil, and Black Pepper
Serves 4 People as a Meal and Multiple as a Side/Appetizer
*Soup Chills for 2+ Hours*
Recipe by © Alysha Melnyk 2018
Large Mixing Bowl
Medium Mixing Bowl
1 Large Cucumber, Peeled and Diced (*This measured to 3 and 1/2 cups in case you have smaller cucumbers)
2 Cups Chicken Stock
1/3 Cup Plain Cream Cheese
1/3 Cup Sour Cream
3 Heirloom Tomatoes, Diced
1/4 Cup Basil, Torn
1/2 Teaspoon Garlic Powder (*You can also use fresh garlic, I just found this easier for blending purposes)
1/4 Teaspoon White Pepper
1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
3 Slices Bread of Choice, Cubed (*Stale bread works great)
1/3 Cup Olive Oil
Seasonings of Choice ~ I sprinkled an everything seasoning on mine (sesame seeds, poppy seeds, salt, pepper, onion and garlic) but you can use just salt and pepper or herbs, etc.
For Extra Topping: Black Pepper, Basil and White Truffle Oil
1. Add the diced cucumber and chicken stock to the blender, blending until smooth.
2. Next, add in following ingredients (one at a time) and blend in between to smooth: plain cream cheese, sour cream, diced tomatoes, torn basil, garlic powder, white pepper and olive oil.
3. Once everything is blended and smooth, pour into a large mixing bowl, cover and chill for 2 hours or more (*if you’re really hungry, you can check the soup periodically until it reaches your preferred chillness).
4. While soup is chilling, you can prepare your croutons.
5. Preheat your oven to 375°F.
6. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper.
7. In a bowl, combine cubed bread pieces and olive oil, mixing to combine/coat the bread pieces.
8. Next, sprinkle in seasonings of choice (I added a tablespoon of the everything mix I had on hand). Mix everything to combine.
9. Spread your bread pieces out on the parchment lined pan and bake for 7 to 10 minutes (*or until golden brown).
10. Allow to cool to room temperature and store if not using quite yet.
11. When soup is chilled and ready to eat, place croutons on top, drizzle some white truffle oil, sprinkle some black pepper and fresh basil.
12. Enjoy! 🙂