Cucumber-Watercress Soup: #SundaySupper

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Chilled cucumbers and watercress soup blended with Greek yogurt and buttermilk, topped with salsa for a hot summer night.

cucumber watercress soup gazpacho

Time to chill out!

Hot summer days are here with trips to the beach with cartons of sunblock and beer, picnics in the country, and sylvan hikes in the mountains. This holiday weekend our stepson (Kevin), his lovely wife (Suzanne), their 5 kids (4 very active boys and 1 very active little girl who dances every moment she can), and one 20-week-old puppy are visiting. So I have more than one reason to chill.

We’ve been hosting these large get-togethers for a few years now, and I’ll admit I’ve had my fair share of overwhelmed moments, especially since I never had kids of my own and am an only child to boot. Carnivorous Maximus and I drop onto couches for hours after they leave. But we have so much fun with them, and all the planning that goes into their visits, that we’re almost always trying to plan the next visit before they’ve even left. We have a step-daughter (Robin), her husband (Tim), and their 2 kids in Portland, and sometimes we’re lucky enough to get them ALL here at the same time, which is ridiculous-fun.

Dinner can be particularly crazy between all of our different preferences. Meat is a must, along with potatoes and loaves of garlic bread, for Kevin and his kids. Suzanne will eat anything I eat, as will Robin, Tim and their kids. I’ve had to declare our house a broccoli-free zone for Tyler, one of Suzanne’s sons. He’s ok if the rest of us eat it though. Artichokes work for everyone except Emma, who thinks it’s gross to eat leaves. Glen confessed a couple of weeks ago that he’s afraid of cheese. Grant, thankfully, will eat almost anything with Ranch dressing on it. Lots of it. Friends wonder why we don’t solve dinner by eating out, but Emma loves to help me in the kitchen and we’d both miss out on that. Glen Likes to help too. My other granddaughter, Tali, also loves to cook. My hope is to get them both here at the same time with me in the kitchen. Maybe next year :-)

In truth, as someone who didn’t grow up with much family but always craved being part of a large family, I find after 50-something years, I finally have the family I always wanted.

This week, the #SundaySupper family shares its best recipes for cooling down when temperatures rise. And this soup is perfect for that. Cucumbers are cooling by their very nature and this soup with watercress will totally chill you out. And it can be made ahead and kept in the refrigerator for several days! A big thank you to Alaiko at Pescetarian Journal for hosting us this week!!!

Cucumber-Watercress Soup – Gazpacho Style! #SundaySupper Summer Chillin’

Prep time: 

Cook time: 

Total time: 

Serves: Serves 4

  • 3 cup peeled, sliced, quartered English cucumbers
  • ¼ cup chopped scallions including most of the darker green stalk (about 2 scallions)
  • ¼ cup coarsely chopped watercress
  • 1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • ¾ cup plain low-fat Greek yogurt (I use Fage)
  • ¾ cup buttermilk
  • 2 Tbsp verjus
  • ½ tsp kosher salt
  • big pinch cumin powder
  • big pinch cayenne powder
  • Pequin dried red pepper flakes (optional)
  • 1 Roma tomato, finely chopped
  • ½ cup coarsely chopped cilantro
  • ¼ medium white onion, minced
  • ½ avocado cut into chunks
  • 1 tsp minced jalapeño
  • splash verjus
  • drizzle olive oil
  1. In a food processor purée all ingredients for the soup EXCEPT the pequin red pepper flakes until smooth. Adjust seasoning - you may find you prefer a little more lemon juice or salt.
  2. Pour into a container, cover, and chill for at least 30 minutes, but ideally overnight.
  3. Serve the pequin red pepper flakes separately for people to sprinkle on as they prefer. This kind of dried red pepper flakes are not very spicy, but instead add a nice smokiness to the soup for depth.
  1. Mix the tomato, cilantro, onion, avocado, and jalapeño together, and toss with verjus and olive oil. Serve on the side.
Verjus is translated as green juice and is the juice extracted from underripe grapes. It's usually stocked with vinegars since it's frequently used as a mild alternative to vinegar. A little rice vinegar can be substituted if you can't find verjus.

The 30 minute cook time is actually chill time in the refrigerator.

Calories: 69
Fat: 1.4 g
Sodium: 67.1 mg
Potassium: 229.3mg
Carbs: 7.6 g
Protein: 6.6 g
Vitamin A: 5.4%
Vitamin C: 9.5%

Summer Chillin’ Recipes:

Brisk Beverages

Chilled Starters

Snappy Salads and Sides

Refreshing Main Dishes

Cool Confections


Sunday Supper MovementJoin the #SundaySupper conversation on twitter on Sunday! We tweet throughout the day and share recipes from all over the world. Our weekly chat starts at 7:00 pm ET. Follow the #SundaySupper hashtag and remember to include it in your tweets to join in the chat. Check out our #SundaySupper Pinterest board for more fabulous recipes and food photos. Would you like to join the Sunday Supper Movement? It’s easy. You can sign up by clicking here: Sunday Supper Movement.

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  1. says

    Loved hearing about your family — you are a trooper! It’s hot hot in Walnut Creek, I want try the soup tonight, but don’t have watercress…will see what I substitute and let you know how it goes.

  2. says

    that is truly wonderful to get something you always wanted! I wanted a close family, but so far its not happened yet… our little family of 4 are close, but the rest of us are still a bit spread out to hang out often.

    Also, love your gazpacho! I’m not a fan of cold soups, but I want to be and try every one I can! : )

  3. says

    Beautiful Susan! And perfect for this hot summer weather. I see that you are making progress in using up your bottle of verjus. I’ve been having a lot of summer soups myself! I’m glad that you enjoy having your stepchildren and grandchildren visit despite all the necessary fuss. It could easily be the opposite so it shows a lot of generosity and flexibility that you’ve embraced it.
    Mary @ Fit and Fed recently posted..Roasted Orange and Yellow Pepper GazpachoMy Profile

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