Love in the Kitchen - making fast, healthy, homegrown meals you'll enjoy

Friday, July 16, 2010

Chilled Sour Cherry Soup

I love fruit soup. Nothing is more refreshing than a cold fruit soup on a hot day. When we cruise (my favorite form of vacation of late) we are offered fruit soup every night for dinner, and I always choose it.

This recipe for sour cherry soup is delicious. Despite the long ingredient list and number of steps, it is really quite simple and also fairly light. And a great way to use those ripe cherries you have on hand this summer! I hope you have the opportunity to try it!

Chilled Sour Cherry Soup with Creme Fraiche and Fried Ginger

Fried Ginger:
1 cup water
1 cup sugar
1/3 cup thin slices of fried ginger
2 cups canola oil

Sour Cherry Soup:
2 pounds fresh or frozen cherries, pitted
1 cup water
10 star anise, cracked
1/2 teaspoon grated orange zest
3/4 cup black currant vinegar (available from gourmet food stores)

To Assemble:
3/4 cup creme fraiche
20 fresh sour cherries, pitted and halved
10 leaves fresh mint, very thinly sliced
1 tablespoon honey 1/2 teaspoon grated orange zest

For the Fried Ginger:
In a small saucepan, combine water and sugar over medium heat. Cook, stirring until sugar dissolves. Bring mixture to s simmer. Add ginger and cook, stirring, for 3 minutes. Strain ginger and put it to dry on paper towels.

In a thick-bottomed pan or cast iron skillet, heat oil to 350 degrees F. (A small piece of bread dropped in the oil should float to the surface almost immediately and brown within 45 seconds). Deep fry ginger until golden brown, about 2 minutes. Drain on paper towels and reserve.

For the Cherry Soup:
Put cherries through a juicer, reserving both the juice and pulp separately. In a small saucepan, combine water, star anise, and orange zest. Place over medium heat and bring to a simmer. Cook, stirring occasinally, for 20 minutes. Strain through a fine sieve into a nonreactive bowl.

Stir in reserved cherry juice. Tasting as you go, slowly add vinegar, stopping when a balanced flavor is reached. Cover and refrigerate until cold.

To Assemble:
In a medium bowl, whick in creme fraiche until somewhat lightened. With a rubber spatula, fold in 2 to 3 tablespoons of the reserved cherry pulp. Cover and refrigerate until cold.

In another medium bowl, combine the halved cherries, mint, and orange zest. Cover and refrigerate until cold.

To Serve:
Divide cherry creme fraiche, minted cherries, and fried ginger among chilled soup bowls. Gently ladle cherry soup around garnishes and serve immediately.

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1 comment:

  1. That sounds very tasty and very refreshing on a hot summer day.