There is nothing more refreshing on a hot day than a bowl of chilled cucumber buttermilk soup. The simplicity of the preparation and the combination of flavours make this recipe an absolute summer staple — from the author of Fresh: Seasonal Recipes Made With Local Foods. John Bishop is an acclaimed B.C. chef and owner of Bishop's in Vancouver.
6-7 cucumbers, peeled and seeded
1 large sweet onion (such as Walla Walla)
4 cups buttermilk
3-4 tbsp chopped fresh mint
Pinch of sugar
8 sprigs fresh mint, for garnish
Step 1: Place a fine-mesh sieve over a bowl. Using a box grater, grate cucumbers and onion into a large bowl. Transfer the mixture to the sieve and allow to drain for 5-10 minutes.
Step 2: Process drained vegetables in a food processor or blender until smooth.
Step 3: Strain puréed vegetables through the sieve, pressing out any excess liquid and discarding any solids.
Step 4: Whisk in buttermilk, chopped mint, sugar and salt to taste. Cover and refrigerate for 2-24 hours.
Step 5: To serve, ladle 8 oz. of soup into each of 8 chilled bowls and garnish with fresh mint.
Reprinted with permission from John Bishop, Dawne Gourley and Dennis Green's Fresh: Seasonal Recipes Made With Local Foods (2007 Douglas & McIntyre).