Summer Entertaining: Cold Soups

Summer Entertaining: Cold Soups
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The forecast calls for almost 100 degrees Fahrenheit, guests are coming over for dinner and the idea of heating up the oven to make appetizers has lost its appeal. 

What can be served before dinner that will impress guests but not heat up the house further?  Cool, summer soups are the perfect before dinner appetizer on a hot summer evening.  No ovens needed.

All of these soups should be made with the freshest ingredients possible for them to taste their best. Always served chilled soups very cold, not at room temperature.

Cool Cucumber Soup

1 - ½ cups grated, seeded, peeled cucumber
1 quart buttermilk
2 tbsp. chopped green onion
 ¼ cup minced parsley
Salt taste

Combine all ingredients.  Cover and chill at least four hours. Serve in chilled small bowls. Garnish with slices of cucumber and a sprig of parsley.

Chilled Cherry Soup

1 pound pitted dark sweet cherries
2 cups water
1 tbsp. sugar
1 tbsp. lemon juice
1/8 tsp. cinnamon
2 tsp. cornstarch
½ cup white wine

Combine cherries, water, sugar, lemon juice and cinnamon in a 2 quart sauce pan. Bring to a simmer over medium heat. Combine the cornstarch and wine. Add to the cherry mixture, stirring until smooth. Boil 2 minutes or until slightly thickened. Pour mixture into a blender (or use a hand blender). Process on low until smooth. Pour into serving bowls. Chill. Serve with whipped topping.

Cold Avocado Soup

½ cup sour cream
2 avocados, peeled, seeded and mashed well
1 lemon
1 tbsp. fresh jalapeno, seeded and minced
1 garlic clove, finely minced
3 cups light cream or half and half
1 cup milk
salt and pepper to taste
Green onions, chopped

Squeeze the lemon over the mashed avocado while preparing ingredients. Combine all ingredients into a large mixing bowl and mix well. If a smoother soup is desired, add to a blender and process. Allow to chill for several hours or overnight.

Gazpacho (Cold Tomato Soup)

2 large tomatoes
1 large cucumber, peeled, seeded
1 small sweet onion
1 large red pepper
3 cups tomato juice
1 -2 cloves garlic, peeled, minced
3 tbsp. red wine vinegar
1/4 cup olive oil
Optional: fresh basil

Roughly chop the tomato, cucumber, and onion. Add to the bowl of a food processor, and process lightly. Add the red pepper, and garlic, then process until pureed. Transfer to a large bowl. Add the tomato juice, vinegar, and oil. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Refrigerate. Chill well. At the last minute, mince the basil, and sprinkle a little bit on each serving. Serve with fresh croutons on the side, and hot pepper sauce or ground red pepper for those who like it spicy.

You may also enjoy:
Mix & Match Soup
Pasta Salads for Spring & Summer
Refreshing Summer Beverages


About The Author

Brenda Hyde is a freelance writer living on ten acres in rural Michigan with her husband and three kids. She is a mom, grandma, gardener, cook and writer. She blogs on all of these topics at


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