Road Tested Recipes: Chilled Avocado Soup with Herbed Breadsticks and Lime Spritzers

I have a deal with my mother-in-law: if she buys the ingredients, I’ll do all the cooking.  On Mother’s Day, I wanted to make something really light and springy for Kathryn, and this is what I chose.  We followed it up with a grilled shrimp salad and finished with angel food cake and strawberry ice cream.  But Brian and I think the soup was the real superstar.

It’s from the book Baby Showers by Gia Russo and Michele Adams, which is out of print.  I’m not necessarily a fan of themed baby showers, but all the recipes in this book are EXCELLENT.  It’s rare that I can say that about a cookbook.  So far, I haven’t found a single dud.

This avocado soup is both refreshing and luxuriant — and best of all, easy to make!  The yield may seem small, but keep in mind that one ladleful is quite enough for one serving.

The herbed breadsticks are a necessary accompaniment, in my opinion — but don’t worry, they’re easy too, owing to using frozen bread dough.

And the spritzers?  That’s known as The Thing My Kids Will Actually Eat.

Chilled Avocado Soup

  • 4 ripe avocados, medium size
  • 2 cups chicken or vegetable stock
  • 1/2 cup cilantro leaves
  • juice of one lime
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • pinch cayenne pepper
  • extra avocado slices and cilantro sprigs, for garnish

Chop avocados into big chunks.  Place in a blender along with stock, cilantro leaves, lime juice, and peppers.  Blend until smooth and creamy (add extra stock or water if it’s too thick).  Place the soup in a big bowl or pitcher and refrigerate until well chilled.  To serve, ladle into bowls, and garnish with extra avocado slices and cilantro sprigs.  Makes about 5 servings.

I suppose you could also swirl some sour cream in there for garnish, if you wanted to be extra decadent.

Herbed Breadsticks

  •  two pounds frozen bread dough, thawed
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons chopped fresh oregano
  • 2 tablespoons melted butter

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and grease with cooking spray.  On a lightly floured or cooking-sprayed (is that a word?) surface, knead the herbs into the bread dough.  Divide dough into fifteen pieces, roll into breadsticks, and place on the baking sheets.  Brush each breadstick with melted butter and bake for 15-20 minutes. Makes 15 big breadsticks.

Lime Spritzers

For each serving, you need:

  • juice of one lime
  • 1 tablespoon superfine sugar
  • 10 ounces club soda or soda water
  • ice
  • lime slice, for garnish

In a tall glass, combine lime juice and superfine sugar.  Add club soda and stir until sugar dissolves.  Fill glass with ice and garnish rim of glass with lime slice.

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