The temperature this week hit the 30s and it was a heavy, humid and sticky heat, there was even no need for me to go to the studio to practice Bikram yoga, I had the same conditions at home!
Not the type of day you want to spend over a steaming stove in the kitchen. You want something cooling, refreshing, light, simple and quick, like this chilled cucumber soup; just the thing when things start to sizzle in the city.
This recipe is based on the New Covent Garden Soup Company Recipe book but omitting the cream which I find quite heavy.
You will need:
one large cucumber - peeled, deseeded and diced
275ml chicken stock
275 ml of tomato juice
400 ml of natural yoghurt
1 small garlic clove
small bunch of mint leaves roughly chopped
1/4 red chili, deseeded and chopped (use rubber gloves to handle the chili)
salt and black pepper
6 tbsp creme fresh, 2 tomatoes (peeled deseeded and diced), 2 teaspoons black olives destoned and roughly choped)
1. Place cucumber in a colander, sprinkle with salt and leave to drain
2. Mix together the tomato juice, the stock, yoghurt, mint and garlic leave to infuse for 30 minutes
3.After 30 minutes wash & dry cucumber using a clean tea towel squeezing out any excess water
4. Strain the mix of tomato juice and stock mixture through a sieve then add the diced cucumber & chopped chilli pepper
5. Chill in fridge for between 2 and 6 hours (although have had left overs the day after)
6. To serve , ladle soup into 6 bowls, mix garnish ingredients in a small bowl, add a tablespoon of creme fraiche to each bowl of soup and top with garnish
For another take on cucmber soup , especially for those who are not fans of tomatoes, try the recipe below from Jody Eddy on the eddybles blog. http://www.eddybles.com/chilled-honeydew-cucumber-soup/