Soup on Sunday: Chilled Peach Soup with Fresh Goat Cheese by Jason Franey
When is it 100° Fahrenheit outside, and the heat index is 105° Fahrenheit, cold soup is king. And, with the start of the summer season, what could be better than peaches? Perhaps peaches and goat cheese...enter Jason Franey's awesome chilled soup. Chef Jason Franey of Seattle's Canlis makes this sweet and tangy summer soup by marinating fresh peaches overnight with dried apricots, honey, vinegar and olive oil and pureeing the mixture. Since peaches can vary in flavor, Franey suggests tasting as you puree and season with vinegar according to taste.
3 cups sliced peeled peaches (about 4 peaches) 1/4 cup finely diced peeled seedless cucumber, plus thin slices for garnish 1/4 cup finely diced yellow bell pepper, plus thin slices for garnish 1/4 cup diced dried apricots 2 tablespoons honey 3 tablespoons crumbled fresh goat cheese, plus more for garnish 1/4 cup white balsamic vinegar, plus more for seasoning 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling Kosher salt 1 large garlic clove 2 cups diced baguette (1/2 inch cubes) Basil leaves, for garnish Freshly ground black pepper
In a bowl, toss the peaches, diced cucumber, yellow pepper and apricots. Add the honey, 3 tablespoons of goat cheese, 1/4 cup of balsamic vinegar and 2 tablespoons of the olive oil. Stir in 1 1/2 teaspoons of salt. Add the garlic. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
Discard the garlic. Transfer the contents of the bowl to a blender and puree. Add 1/4 cup of water and puree until very smooth and creamy; add more water if the soup seems too thick. Season with salt and vinegar, to taste. Refrigerate the soup until very cold, about 1 hour.
Meanwhile, in a medium skillet, heat the remaining 1/4 cup of olive oil. Add the diced bread and cook over moderate heat, stirring, until golden and crisp, about 2 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the croutons to paper towels and season with salt.
Pour the peach soup into shallow bowls and garnish with the sliced cucumber, sliced bell pepper, goat cheese, croutons and basil. Drizzle lightly with olive oil, season with black pepper and serve.
Photo by Anna Williams Recipe is courtesy of Food & Wine