Summer tendencies. A chilled buttermilk soup

(Cold buttermilk lemon soup with fresh mango and biscotti)

“But here they were, and Olive pictured two slices of Swiss cheese pressed together, such holes they brought to this union – what pieces life took out of you” — Olive Kitteridge, by Elizabeth Strout.

It’s a terrible cliche, but every time B goes away, it feels as though a little piece of me is missing. It’s like, all spiders and no boyfriend, in this empty house.

Especially since I’m about to leave my current job to embark on a quiet holiday. What mad timing! But I’ve resolved to try to be productive with this abundance of spare time that I’m now faced with. In the next few weeks, I’d like to read more, listen more, learn more and eat better. Starting with breakfast.

This buttermilk soup, also known as Kærnemælk Koldskål in Danish, doubles as breakfast, an afternoon snack or a very satisfying light dessert. As the Summer heat and the fruit it reaps is starting to slowly creep into our lives here, I’ve dressed my soup up with a little fresh mango.

Cold buttermilk lemon soup:
(serves 4; from The Scandinavian Cookbook by Trina Hahnemann)

1 vanilla bean
3 egg yolks
6 tablespoons caster sugar
2 tablespoons grated lemon zest
juice of 1/2 lemon
6 cups buttermilk

To garnish : 1 whole lemon and homemade biscotti

Split the vanilla bean lengthwise and scrape out the seeds with the tip of a knife. In a bowl, beat together the egg yolks, sugar, and vanilla seeds until pale and fluffy. Add the lemon zest and juice and the buttermilk. Chill for 1 hour.

Cut the whole lemon into slices and add to the buttermilk soup just before serving. At the table, break biscotti over the soup and eat immediately.

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  1. Rosa said,

    October 23, 2011 @ 8:25 pm

    What an unusual dish. That soup must taste wondeerful!



  2. leaf (the indolent cook) said,

    October 23, 2011 @ 10:05 pm

    Simple yet intriguing combination! I’m curious.

  3. Laura said,

    October 24, 2011 @ 12:33 am

    It seems to belong to the comfort food group.

    I hope you have a nice relaxing time and that we’ll see more of your creations.

  4. Juls said,

    October 24, 2011 @ 7:01 am

    I love the suggestion on FG that this can be for breakfast! The idea of a sweet buttermilk soup first thing in the morning pleases me! It looks fantastic. I hope the days go fast until you and B are back together again.

  5. Jesica @ Pencil Kitchen said,

    October 24, 2011 @ 9:04 am

    I’ll kill the spiders for ya!

  6. Emma said,

    October 24, 2011 @ 11:27 am

    We have a little spider friend outside the back door that has become nearly a constant companion in recent weeks. I like to blow on the web and watch it convulse (as if that’s going to draw me into its snare, ha). I dread winter’s arrival, when spidey will be no more:(

    Very cool recipe. I love baking with buttermilk, but on its own it freaks me out a bit. I’ll have to try this and see – does its odd pungent smell becomes masked by the other ingredients?

  7. Dina said,

    October 25, 2011 @ 6:52 am

    i love buttermilk, so i would love to try this.

  8. gummi baby said,

    October 25, 2011 @ 6:54 am

    Wow, it’s like you read my mind! I have a half litre of buttermilk left over from making scones (dismal failure after two attempts, too disillusioned to try again) wondering what to do with it … : D

  9. shez said,

    October 25, 2011 @ 1:11 pm

    There’s something strangely calming about the quiet that comes with solitude… and then it just gets lonely. Hope B is back before your quiet holiday is done (and that the spiders are of the friendly variety regardless).

  10. InTolerantChef said,

    October 25, 2011 @ 3:15 pm

    What a lovely soothing recipe! It seems to be the spidery time of year, I’ve noticed webs popping up everywhere.

  11. Sophie said,

    November 1, 2011 @ 5:14 am

    MMMMMMMM,…what an appetizing & pretty looking refreshing soup! Different & stylish too!

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