Vanilla-Rhubarb Soup with Strawberries

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It’s easy to get carried away at Farmer’s Markets, where the compulsion to grab random things you’ve never used takes over. Letting fresh ingredients sit on the counter for too long defeats the purpose of going to such markets, so I always look for recipes that make the most of seasonal produce.

If you happen to find rhubarb and strawberry in your reusable grocery totes or CSA box, try this Scandinavian-inspired dessert soup. The sweet and sour vanilla-rhubarb base (rabarbersoppa) is done in about 20 minutes, giving you a headstart in figuring out what to do with the rest of your haul.

I prefer to serve rhubarb soup chilled with sweetened cream and sliced strawberries, but ice cream also sounds great with this, doesn’t it?

Now what should I do with radish and still-poopy duck eggs?

recipe adapted from James Peterson’s Splendid Soups
Strawberry Feast hosted by My Kitchen Treasures

Rabarbersoppa (Vanilla-Rhubarb Soup)
Served Chilled with Strawberries and Cream

makes about 6 servings

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1 pound rhubarb, trimmed and cut into 1/4-inch slices
1/2 cup granulated sugar, or to taste
1 vanilla bean, split in half lengthwise
4 cups water
1 cup heavy cream
1 tablespoon confectioner’s sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 pints strawberries, quartered

Directions:

  1. Place the rhubarb, sugar, vanilla bean, and water in a pot. Bring to a gentle simmer and cook for about 15 minutes with the cover slightly ajar, just until the rhubarb is softened. Cover tightly, let cool, and refrigerate until thoroughly chilled.
  2. Remove the vanilla bean and scrape out the seeds with a paring knife. Reserve the seeds. Strain the soup, pushing down with a ladle to extract liquid from the rhubarb. Discard the pulp and mix the vanilla bean seeds with the strained rhubarb soup.
  3. To Serve: Mix together the heavy cream, confectioner’s sugar, and vanilla extract (alternatively, serve with whipped cream or ice cream). Place the quartered strawberries in chilled bowls and pour in the rhubarb soup. Drizzle with the cream mixture and serve.

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