Summer fruits make great bases for soups. Here, I’ve combined strawberries and fresh ginger juice for a sweet-tart-spicy soup. Almost any berry or combination can be used, so take advantage of what’s in season. If you don’t have a juicer you can make ginger juice by using a garlic press or pureeing fresh ginger in a blender and then straining it through a fine mesh strainer or squeezing it through cheesecloth. If you start with all the ingredients right out of the refrigerator, you won’t need to chill the soup long, but it will still benefit from time to allow the flavors to blend.
Combine the Strawberry Puree and banana in a blender (or use an immersion blender), and blend until smooth. Add ginger juice to taste, and enough sparkling cider to attain your desired consistency. Chill for at least 2 hours. Ladle into chilled soup bowls. Serve with a dollop of yogurt, a scattering of fresh berries, and a mint sprig or two.
© 2004 John Ash. All rights reserved.