Chilled Avocado & Yogurt Soup with Tomato Salsa

Chilled Avocado & Yogurt Soup with Tomato Salsa
Here at Plum Deluxe, we are no strangers to soup recipes -- in particular, cold soups, which are much more than gazpacho.
We believe soup is a year-round recipe; in fact, chilled soups can not only cool you down on a hot day, but can also be a great conversation piece for those guests not "in the know" about cool soups (sorry, pun intended).
Today, we're sharing a wonderful culinary creation that is great with pita or tortilla chips. It's lovely as a small meal or served as a starter before your full dinner party display. It's from Janet Fletcher's new cookbook, all about cooking with yogurt.

Chilled Avocado & Yogurt Soup

Serves 6.

  • 2 large ripe but firm avocados
  • 1 1⁄2 cups buttermilk
  • 1 1⁄2 cups plain yogurt
  • 2 heaping tablespoons chopped cilantro
  • 1 large clove garlic, thinly sliced
  • 1⁄2 serrano or jalapeño chile, seeds removed for less heat if desired, or more to taste
  • 1⁄2 teaspoon toasted and ground cumin seeds
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice
  • Kosher or sea salt
  • 1 large plum (Roma) tomato, halved lengthwise, seeded, and cut into 1 ⁄ 4-inch dice
  • 1⁄4 cup finely minced white onion
  • 2 heaping tablespoons chopped cilantro
  • 1⁄2 serrano or jalapeño chile, seeds removed for less heat if desired, finely minced
  • 1 small clove garlic, finely minced
  • Kosher or sea salt
  • Freshly squeezed lime juice

Halve and pit the avocados. Set aside half an avocado for the salsa. Put the remaining avocado flesh in a blender with the buttermilk, yogurt, cilantro, garlic, chile, and cumin. Blend until smooth. Taste and add more chile if desired, and then blend again.
Transfer to a bowl and stir in enough cold water to thin the soup to a pleasing consistency, about 1⁄2 cup. Stir in the lime juice, or more to taste, and season with salt. Chill thoroughly.
Just before serving, prepare the salsa:
In a bowl, stir together the tomato, onion, cilantro, chile, and garlic. Cut the reserved avocado half into 1⁄4-inch dice and fold it in gently, and then season to taste with salt and lime juice and stir again gently to avoid mashing the avocado.
If the soup has thickened in the refrigerator, whisk in ice water to thin it to the desired consistency. Taste for seasoning. Divide among 6 bowls. Top each serving with a spoonful of salsa and serve.
On toasting/grinding cumin seeds: Ground cumin is much more fragrant if you make it from whole seeds that you toast and grind only as needed. Put the seeds in a small dry skillet and cook over moderate heat‚ swirling the pan often‚ until the cumin darkens and becomes fragrant‚ 2 to 3 minutes. Let cool‚ and then grind into a fine powder in a mortar or spice grinder.

Reprinted with permission from Yogurt, by Janet Fletcher, copyright © 2015, published by Ten Speed Press, an imprint of Penguin Random House LLC.
Photographs copyright © 2015 by Eva Kolenko

Andy Hayes

Andy Hayes is the founder and creator of Plum Deluxe. He authors our award-winning weekly email newsletter, The Blend and curates our popular organic tea of the month club.
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