Late Summer Soup: Zucchini and Basil Velouté
Zucchini, that late summer garden staple is just about ready to pick – or to buy at market. We all know zucchini in its tried and true forms – zucchini bread, grilled zucchini, fried zucchini, zucchini “spaghetti” (created with the recent “hot gadget”, the spiralizer) and for the very ambitious, stuffed zucchini blossoms.
I wondered if zucchini could make a more formal appearance, something appropriate for a summer evening dinner party on the patio, under the stars. After a bit of experimentation, I came up with this delicious and elegant zucchini and basil veloute.
This recipe for Zucchini, Basil Velouté is suitable for even the most novice of cooks. As there are only a few ingredients, small, sweet zucchini and fresh basil are key. I like to serve this soup chilled with a dollop of creme fraiche and snipped basil on top.You could add croutons or diced zucchini instead. Not counting calories? Add a cup of half and half to the chilled soup before serving. The bright green color and luscious texture make this a lovely starter for a dinner party or a family meal.
Zucchini and Basil Velouté
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 Onions peeled and cut into thin half moons
- 2 pounds Zucchini unpeeled and cut into a small dice
- 1 large Russet Potato cut into small dice
- 1 quart Chicken stock preferably homemade (or substitute vegetable stock)
- 1 bunch fresh basil leaves
- to taste Salt and Pepper
- for garnish Crème fraiche
- In a stockpot over low heat, warm the oil and sweat the onions covered, until softened and translucent, about 3-5 minutes.
- Add the zucchini, potato and stock and simmer, covered, for about 15-20 minutes or until the vegetables are soft and cooked through.
- Roughly chop the basil and add it to the soup.
- Puree in a blender or with an immersion blender until smooth and velvety.
- Taste and season with salt and pepper.
- Add a dollop of crème fraîche just before serving.
- May be served warm or chilled.