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Chilled Carrot Soup with Yogurt and Cilantro

May 31, 2011 | Tags: Deborah Madison , Food , Vegetables | Post comment

Chilled Carrot Soup with Yogurt and Cilantro

It’s a hot day, you want a cool soup, but tomato season is months away.

What to do?  Use something that is available but not as garden-sensitive as tomatoes, such as carrots. Pair them with the spicier herbs in their botanical family along with ginger and turmeric and turn them into a chilled soup garnished with yogurt mixed with cilantro and minced chile. The acid touch of fresh lime juice to make all the flavors come alive.

I served this as an appetizer on Memorial Day weekend from small bowls, but the leftovers will make a full meal for two or three.
This is not a heavily seasoned soup.  If you like a lot of spice, you can double the cumin, coriander and turmeric. The ginger will come through as is.

Ingredients

2 tablespoons ghee, olive oil or a mixture
1 onion – it can be a sweet variety, sliced
1 heaping tablespoon roughly chopped ginger
3 cups sliced carrots
1 teaspoon cumin
½ teaspoon coriander
¼ teaspoon turmeric
1 heaping tablespoon cilantro with leaves and stems, finely minced
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
5 1/2 cups water or light chicken stock
juice of 1 lime

For Serving

2 tablespoons yogurt
1/2 jalapeno, seeded and finely diced, or pinch red pepper flakes
2 tablespoons chopped cilantro

Preparation

Warm the ghee or olive oil in a wide soup pot, then add the onion,  ginger,  carrots, spices and cilantro.  Give a stir and cook for about five minutes. Add 5 cups water or stock and the salt.  Bring to a boil, cover the pan, and simmer for 20 minutes.  Let cool, then puree until very smooth. Chill well. Season with lime juice, taste for salt and more if needed.

Mix the yogurt, chile and cilantro together. Serve the soup and swirl a teaspoon or less into each portion.

Makes 6 cups