Suzi's Blog

Chilled Cucumber-Melon Soup with Radish-Mint Salsa

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This is one of those dishes that is encompassing perfect. If you had just this soup for a meal, you would be totally satisfied. It is so sublimely perfect that it will make you giggle.

In short, I love this soup. I’m a deep advocate for cucumber, which is my candidate for the top universal food. Here, those distinctive cucumber notes are mellowed with melon plus yogurt plus crème fraîche. The creamy, velvety result features cucumber and melon in friendly competition with the diary tang. It’s all lively and successful.

If yourneed more than one dish for a meal, then pair this soup with a great salad and some toasted herb bread with melted butter. You’ll become a “soup” believer after just a spoonful or two.


Chilled Cucumber-Melon Soup with Radish-Mint Salsa

Yield: 6 cups, about 6 large servings [but you’ll want large]

Ingredients:

For the soup:

  • ¾ cup plain yogurt [not Greek yogurt]
  • ¾ cup crème fraîche
  • 1 medium seedless hothouse cucumber
  • 1 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 1 small clove garlic
  • 2 cups very ripe honeydew or galia melon

For the salsa:

  • 8 radishes, julienned
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh mint
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Garnishes: sprinkling of snipped fresh chives, a small dollop of yogurt or crème fraîche

Preparation:

Cucumber-Melon Soup

For the soup, in a blender, puree ¾ cup each plain yogurt and crème fraîche, 1 medium-size seedless hothouse cucumber, in chunks, 1 teaspoon coarse salt, and 1 small clove garlic, crushed through a press. Pour into a bowl.

Add 2 cups very ripe honeydew or galia melon to blender; puree. Add to cucumber mixture and stir to combine; chill.

For the radish-mint salsa, julienne 8 radishes; combine in a bowl with ¼ cup chopped fresh mint, 1 tablespoon lime juice, and ¼ teaspoon each kosher salt and pepper. Stir in olive oil.

To serve, ladle soup into bowls and top with radish salsa, a sprinkling of snipped fresh chives, and a small dollop of yogurt or crème fraîche.

Source: Frank Melodia

Photo Information Canon T2i, EFS 60 mm Macro Lens, F/5 for 1/100th second at ISO‑3200

 

Brian’s Citrus Cascade

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This is supposed to be a blog for Brian’s Cucumber Lemonade #2, following yesterday’s #1.

I got a little side tracked. I was looked for 6 lemons and found only 3, but I had a lime and 2 oranges. So, this drink is not “lemonady” at all. It’s citrus and, modestly, brilliantly refreshing. The beverage is made with only cucumber juice, citrus juice and some simple syrup. No water. It’s a tad viscous and definitely forceful.

How does it taste? The cucumber coolness hits first, followed by this cascade of citrus notes: lemon, then orange. The lime is barely susceptible in my version here, but I suspect that every time you make this drink, you’ll find a different kaleidoscope of flavors to enjoy. And, you can adjust the mix of citrus juice here; you are looking for about ⅔ cup of juice. Remember, if you change the ratio of lemons/limes to oranges, you’ll be affecting the sweetness level. And, more oranges will give you more juice.

I’ll go to the store, get more lemons, and work on #2. In the meantime, this #1.5 is very satisfactory.


Brian’s Cucumber Citrus Cascade #1.5

Yield: 2 cups

Ingredients:

  • 1 English cucumber, about 12 ounces
  • 3 lemons
  • 1 lime
  • 2 oranges
  • ½ cup simple syrup

Preparation:

Peel, slice and seed the cucumber. Cut into chunks and put them in a blender [a Vitamix is better for this, much better]. Process until completely pulverized: a minute or more. Strain through a fine mesh sieve into a bowl. You want about ⅔ cup of cucumber juice.

Rinse the blender and return the cucumber water to it. Add the juice of the lemons, lime, and oranges. Add the sugar syrup. Process until well blended.

Chill before serving and then serve with ice.

Source: Brian O’Rourke, inspired from food.com

Photo Information Canon T2i, EFS 60 mm Macro Lens, F/4 for 1/40th second at ISO‑2500