We served this soup cold at our last house event, with a hunk of foccacia on the side. If you have vegetable stock prepared ahead of time, this soup doesn’t take much time to make, and is a beautiful addition to a mid-summer meal. If you’d like something a little richer, we’ve also served this soup with feta and chopped basil sprinkled on top, in place of the tomato relish, and that works well too.
Ingredients: zucchini, potatoes, kale, celery, onions, vegetable stock, walnuts, tomatoes, hot peppers, basil, garlic, cane vinegar
1. Cut zucchini and potatoes (2:1 ratio) and a handful of celery and onions into big chunks. Remove the stems from a few leaves of kale, and chop into large pieces. If you’re looking to use giant zucchini that you want to get rid of, make sure to peel off the tough skin and to scoop out the seeds. In a large pot, cover the vegetables with vegetable stock. Bring to a boil, and cook at a rapid boil until the vegetables are tender. Set aside to cool.
2. Once the vegetables and broth are cool enough to handle, puree the mixture with a blender or food processor, add salt and pepper to taste, and adjust the consistency of the soup with vegetable stock if it needs thinning. Refrigerate.
3. Mince tomatoes and basil and a clove or two of garlic and hot pepper. Combine these ingredients with cane vinegar, salt, and pepper to reach a consistency similar to a thin salsa.
4. Use a frying pan to toast walnuts in a single layer on the stove — be careful not to burn the walnuts. Remove the walnuts from heat. When cool enough to touch, break the walnuts into small pieces.
5. To serve, ladle the chilled soup into bowls. Spoon tomato relish on top, and sprinkle with walnut pieces.