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Sweet Summer Soup

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Sweet summer fruits are one of the best parts of the season. Of course they’re wonderful to eat in all their natural goodness, but it’s also fun to use them in different ways. I like to serve a chilled dessert soup on hot summer evenings. It has the benefit of being super quick to make and it can (and should) be made ahead. I used strawberries and raspberries for this one, but you can use just one or the other. Frozen fruit is fine, but use fruit that YOU’VE frozen, not out of a bag. (See note below for freezing fruit.)

A fun way to serve this dessert soup is to call it Strawberry (and/or Raspberry) Gazpacho. Dice up lots of different fruits – mango, kiwi, strawberries and papaya and spoon some over the soup in the individual soup bowls. Serve the rest of the fruit separately. Garnish with mint.

Chilled Strawberry Raspberry Soup (serves 4 to 6)

4 cups strawberries and raspberries
(If using frozen, rinse quickly under cool water to start the thawing)
¾ cup sugar
2 to 3 tsps. fresh lemon juice
1 cup orange juice, fresh is best
sour cream for garnish

Place all ingredients in blender and blend, starting with 2 teaspoons of lemon juice. Blend for as long as you can stand the noise, up to 5 minutes. (If using frozen fruit, stop the blender every once in a while and scrape down the sides.) Taste and add more lemon juice if you want more zip. Chill well and serve with a dollop of sour cream

Variation:
Remove 2 tablespoons of orange juice from your cup measure and substitute 2 tablespoons of Grand Marnier or Cointreau.

To freeze strawberries, raspberries, blueberries or blackberries, rinse them gently in water, drain well in a colander and lay on paper towels until mostly dried. Line baking sheets with waxed paper or plastic wrap. Place fruit on sheets in one layer. Open freeze until hard. Pack fruit into freezer proof plastic bags.

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