Okay, this is just soup and maybe not enough for lunch, and certainly not enough for dinner… but serve an individual chilled shrimp cocktail alongside and this becomes a veritable feast. Be inventive; try a herbed mayonnaise with the shrimp instead of the old stale standby cocktail sauce.
1½ tbsp butter
1 cup chopped onions
4 cucumbers, peeled, seeded, cut into ½ inch thick slices (about 5 cups)
1 large Russet potato, peeled, cut into ½ inch dice
3½ cups low-salt chicken broth
3 large fresh dill sprigs plus 6 tablespoons minced fresh dill
1 tsp salt
1 Cup crème fraîche (or sour cream)
Melt butter in large pot over medium heat. Add onions and sauté until slightly softened, about 3 minutes. Add cucumbers and potato then stir 1 minute. Add broth, dill sprigs, and 1 teaspoon salt. Increase heat and bring to simmer. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer until cucumbers and potato are tender, stirring occasionally, about 25 minutes. Purée soup in a food processor or blender until smooth. Return to pot. Cool 15 minutes. Whisk in ½ cup crème fraîche and 4 tablespoons minced dill. Cover and chill until cold, about 4 hours. This can be made 1 day ahead. Keep chilled. Taste the soup, adding more salt if desired.
Remaining crème fraîche (or sour cream)
3 ounces smoked salmon, cut into ½ inch pieces
Ladle soup into bowls. Place a dollop of crème fraîche in center of each bowl. Sprinkle with smoked salmon and remaining 2 tablespoons minced dill.
Konzelmann Sparkling Riesling VQA at $14.85 is perfect for a brunch including smoked salmon. Using the Charmat method, which involves secondary fermentation in pressurized tanks, gives this wine its sparkle. Made with 100% Riesling, it’s bursting with citrus fruit flavors balanced by racy acidity.
Hot and cold soups can be prepared even before you leave port, and transported in a thermos. THERMOS™ makes some great products but can get pricey… especially the larger ones that can hold hot pastas and other such foods. These are worthwhile investments if you travel a lot and like to eat on the fly. I found a very nice stainless steel vacuum thermal flask at Kitchen Stuff Plus® that holds a full litre and only costs $18. How great would it be to treat your skipper at the helm with a sandwich and a cup of soup while crossing the lake to one of your favorite destinations?
(Have a recipe or tip you would like to share? Send it to me and you might find it along with your name in a future issue.)