When I picked up the cucumbers at the market, I knew I wanted to make a cold cucumber soup. But I had to jazz it up a little bit. I often find that chilled cucumber soups are a bit, well, flat. They're nice and refreshing, but the lack of pizazz often results in a half eaten bowl of soup.
So I threw the cubanelle pepper in there. And some ground ginger. And a pinch of cayenne pepper. Ok, and a touch of garlic. These additions may seem strange, but that subtle heat and spiciness that these ingredients brought to the table added a much appreciated complexity to the soup that kept me interested and going back for more.
One thing to keep in mind when making this soup, or any chilled soup for that matter, is to adjust the seasoning after it is chilled. The soup will taste slightly different, and therefore will require a slightly different amount of seasoning, when it is very cold, versus room temperature.
Chilled Spiced Cucumber Yogurt Soup
4 cucumbers, peeled, seeded & chopped
1 cubanelle pepper, seeds & ribs removed, chopped
3 scallions (white & light green
parts only), chopped
4 tablespoons fresh mint
1 clove garlic, minced
2 cups greek yogurt
1/2 cup sour cream
juice from 1 lemon
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon salt
pinch of cayenne pepper
Place all ingredients in a large bowl and combine. Working in batches, puree in a blender until smooth. Transfer pureed soup into a large bowl and chill in refrigerator until very cold, about 2 hours. Adjust seasoning.
Ladle into bowls and top with an extra dollop of yogurt or sour cream and a little chopped mint, if desired.