My Recipe Box

Puréed Summer Squash Soup with Raita

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Serves four.

Yields 1/2 cup raita.

For the raita:
  • 1/2 cup whole-milk yogurt
  • 1/4 tsp. kosher salt; more to taste
  • 1 tsp. vegetable oil
  • 1/2 tsp. brown mustard seeds
  • 1/4 tsp. cumin seeds
  • 1/2 tsp. onion seeds (optional)
For the soup:
  • 12 sprigs fresh cilantro with roots, if possible (1 packed cup); more leaves for garnish
  • 1 small head garlic, cut across the equator; plus 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 3 Tbs. unsalted butter
  • 1 large onion, sliced (to yield 1-1/2 cups)
  • 2 tsp. kosher salt; more to taste
  • 1 Tbs. minced fresh ginger
  • 2 Tbs. minced jalapeño
  • 1/2 tsp. cumin seeds
  • 1/2 tsp. coriander seeds
  • 1/8 tsp. cardamom seeds or 1 green cardamom pod (optional)
  • 1 lb. zucchini or other summer squash (unpeeled), sliced 1/2-inch thick
  • 1/4 tsp. fresh lime juice

Make the raita: In a bowl, combine the yogurt and salt. Heat the oil in a small pan over medium heat until it shimmers. Add the mustard seeds, cumin seeds, and onion seeds, if using. When they start to pop, add the oil and seeds to the yogurt. Stir, taste, and add salt, if needed.

Make the soup: Put the cilantro, halved garlic head, and 5 cups water in a large saucepan or a stockpot. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, and cook uncovered for 15 min. Strain the broth.

Melt the butter in a large, heavy saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion, 2 teaspoons salt, ginger, jalapeño, cumin seeds, coriander seeds, and cardamom, if using. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion is translucent, about 10 min.; don't let it brown. Stir in the 1 Tbs. minced garlic and the zucchini, cover, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the squash is softened, about 5 min. Add 4 cups of the broth, bring to a simmer, and cook until the zucchini is tender, about another 3 min.

Purée the mixture in a blender and strain it (see How to purée a vegetable soup).

Add the lime juice; taste and add salt if needed. Serve warm, garnished with 1 to 2 Tbs. raita and the cilantro leaves.

nutrition information (per serving):
Size : with 2 Tbs raita; Calories (kcal): 165; Fat (g): fat g 11; Fat Calories (kcal): 100; Saturated Fat (g): sat fat g 6; Protein (g): protein g 5; Monounsaturated Fat (g): 3; Carbohydrates (g): carbs g 15; Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 1; Sodium (mg): sodium mg 1120; Cholesterol (mg): cholesterol mg 25; Fiber (g): fiber g 3;

Photo: Sarah Jay

I saved the original Fine Cooking magazine with this recipe for years, just because of this soup. It is SO delicious, though I reduced the salt by half. The issue this soup is from is one of the best issues ever.

I saved the original Fine Cooking magazine with this recipe for years, just because of this soup. It is SO delicious, though I reduced the salt by half. The issue this soup is from is one of the best issues ever.

Amazing soup! I used nonfat plain Greek yogurt for the raita and it was delicious - it makes the soup!

Too many summer squash? This is a great way to use squash without adding a lot of calories! I often grill the squash before adding it to the soup pot. Raita is the essential finishing touch. Try low fat yogurt in place of whole milk yogurt.

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