The majority of the soups I make are of a hearty variety, like Minestrone and Lentil. You know the kind that warm you up on a cold winter’s day. But as the days begin to heat up the simplicity of a summer meal becomes appealing for a couple of reasons. First, the garden (yours or someone you know) is bursting with ripe veggies. If you’ve ever grown your own zucchini you know how prolific these can be. I don’t have a garden now, but when I was living in California we had so much of this squash, that even the neighbors had their fill. Not wanting to waste food one gets creative with what you’ve got. Fresh sun-ripened tomatoes, onions, peppers and peas (to name a few) make delicious summer soups and are the perfect solution to the garden’s abundance. The second reason I like soups for dinner is because it seems to take a few degree’s off the triple-digit (HOT-as- HELL) weather we have here in the ole Southwest.
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 leek, finely chopped
- 1/2 cup onions, finely chopped
- 1 celery stalk, finely chopped
- 2 zucchini, coarsely grated (approx. 2 cups)
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed
- 4 cups chicken broth
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- In a large saucepan, over medium heat, heat olive oil and butter. Add the leeks, onion and celery, cook until veggies are tender (about 10 minutes).
- Stir in zucchini and garlic. Add chicken broth, reduce heat, simmer 15-20 minutes.
- Remove pan from heat and let cool.
- Add fresh lemon juice.
- Transfer half of the soup to a blender, pulse until desired consistency. (I puree it).
- Mix with the other half and store in fridge overnight. These flavors are so much better the next day.
This is an easy make-ahead meal for a picnic, BBQ, bike ride, day of hiking or road trip. Simply transfer your soup to a thermos and you’re good to go!