I love cold soups in the summer, don't you? So refreshing. What could be easier for a picnic? Just pour it into a thermos to keep it chilled and take it along. You can dress cold soups up or down.....it all depends on how you serve them. I posted a wonderful strawberry soup a while back; I've served it at a luncheon, at a casual cook-out and it was even served at an engagement party I attended, passed around in small glass cups on a silver tray during cocktail hour. And I've got another cold soup coming your way for the 4th of July.
But today, it's all about chilled sorrel soup. Is sorrel available in your area? Or perhaps you're growing it in your garden? If so, you've got to try this lovely soup. Sorrel is a member of the buckwheat family and you'll find it most frequently used in soups and sauces. You can use sorrel in salads too, but I'd stick with the small tender leaves that are less acidic. Cooked in a cream soup like this one, you'll find sorrel tangy with a slight lemony flavor.
It's an easy green to clean. Wash to remove grit, fold the leaf in half lengthwise, grab the stem/vein and pull to remove any woody strings. Sorrel practically falls apart and melts when it hits anything hot. Fresh, as you can see, it's a lovely green color. Unfortunately, when cooked it turns a drab green, but its fresh tangy taste survives to make a delicious soup.
I've saved a couple recipes. Gabrielle Hamilton from Prune likes to serve her sorrel soup hot over some diced cooked potatoes rather than puréeing the potatoes along with the sorrel. I think I'd like to try that texture in a sorrel soup and I'd like to try it hot too. But because it's summer, I'm sticking with this recipe which calls for chilling and you can serve it in paper soup cups if you want.
Cold Sorrel, Leek and Potato Soup
Adapted from HERE.
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 medium leek (white and light-green parts only), thinly sliced (about 1 cup)
2 small Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and cut into small dice (about 2 cups)
4 cups low-salt chicken broth
4 oz. sorrel leaves, ribs removed; more for garnish
1/2 cup heavy cream
Freshly ground black pepper
Melt the butter in a 4-quart pot over medium-low heat. Add the leek and a pinch of salt and cook until tender but not brown, 5 to 7 minutes. Stir in the potatoes and then add 4 cups of chicken stock and 1 tsp. salt. Bring to a boil, cover partially, reduce the heat to maintain a simmer, and cook until the potatoes are tender, about 12 minutes. Add the sorrel and cook until wilted, 1 to 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool slightly.
Purée the soup in a blender until smooth. Pour the soup into a medium bowl, cover, and refrigerate until completely chilled, about 4 hours. Whisk the cream into the soup and season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve garnished with thinly sliced sorrel leaves and even a dollop of yogurt or sour cream. Makes about 4 cups.