Summer Squash Soup with Fresh Herbs
This is a very basic, very versatile cream soup recipe – great to have on hand as fresh summer squash and fragrant herbs come into season. You can mix, match and combine the herbs to suit your taste, and, because this soup can be served hot, chilled or room temperature, it's a nice choice for lunch or entertaining.
- 1-1/2 lbs unpeeled summer squash (yellow, zucchini, pattypan)
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 1 cup onion, chopped
- 4 to 5 cloves garlic, very finely chopped
- 1/4 cup flour
- 3-1/2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
- 1/2 cup half-and-half, whole milk or light cream
- 1-1/2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1-1/2 to 3 tablespoons chopped fresh herbs (dill, basil, tarragon or parsley)
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Sour cream or plain Greek yogurt (optional)
- Cut the squash into small (1/2-inch) cubes and set aside.
- Note: Choose small to medium squash with tender skins and leave them unpeeled for both extra color and nutritional value.
- Melt the butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and sauté until soft and translucent, 3 to 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, 1-1/2 minutes longer.
- Add the flour, combine well and continue cooking, stirring often, until the flour is pale golden in color, 3 to 4 minutes. Slowly whisk in the chicken broth and continue whisking until the mixture is smooth and well blended.
- Add the squash and season with salt and pepper. Cover and continue cooking, stirring occasionally, until the squash is tender, 12 to 15 minutes.
- Remove the soup from the heat and, using a hand-held immersion blender (or conventional blender), purée until smooth. Return the pan to the stove, stir in the half-and-half and lemon juice and heat through, 1 to 2 minutes.
- Taste and adjust the seasoning, add your choice of fresh herbs, ladle into serving bowls and top with a dollop of sour cream if desired.
Suggested squash and herb pairings:
• Yellow Squash / Fresh Dill
• Zucchini / Fresh Basil & Parsley
• Pattypan / Fresh Tarragon