Chosen Eats: A Cool Soup for a Hot DayAfter the 80-degree days we had earlier this week, digging into some soup may not seem so appealing. But not all soups are meant to keep you warm on a chilly night. Some—such as this chilled cucumber soup—can keep you cool on a hot day. My roommates and I have finally gotten around to planting our herbs and vegetables, and soon we won’t have to go out and buy the cucumbers or dill for this recipe; we’ll be able to just walk outside and pick our own.

Chilled soups extend far beyond gazpacho and borscht. In fact, there is a long history of Jews eating cold, dairy soups, especially around Shavuot, which concludes tonight. Eating fruit soups is a common practice on this holiday, as is working dairy into your meals. This recipe satisfies both of those traditions, with its main ingredient and the addition of Greek yogurt, which is especially important in this dish. It adds tang and richness to the cucumbers’ mellow fruitiness.

Chilled Cucumber Soup

Serves 4 to 6

If you use American cucumbers, halve them lengthwise and remove the seeds before cutting into ½-inch slices.

2 pounds English (seedless) cucumbers, peeled, halved lengthwise, and cut into ½-inch slices
1 ¼ cups cold water
½ cup whole fat Greek yogurt
2 scallions, white and green parts chopped
1 garlic clove, chopped
3 tablespoons lemon juice
2 tablespoons dill, minced
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon salt

1. Combine cucumbers, water, scallions, garlic, lemon juice, dill, olive oil and salt in blender. Puree until smooth. (If soup is too thick, add water until it reaches desired consistency.) Transfer soup to large glass mixing bowl and stir in yogurt. Season to taste with pepper.

2. Cover and refrigerate until chilled. (Soup tastes better the next day, but can be served once it’s cold.) Serve with croutons, extra dill and a dollop of yogurt.

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