Cold Thai Style Watermelon Soup
What…ever! My reaction after reading the newspaper article that the city of Portland didn’t make the top 10 snobby cities in US. We’re just outside of it, in the 11th spot as measured by Travel and Leisure. So lame. Where did we go wrong? We worked hard for this..sob. Darn you San Francisco! That kidding aside, not-snobbish-enough Portland will keep the prize of being weird for now.
The price of watermelon in Japan is anywhere from $20 –$30 each. Toward the end of Summer prices come down quite a bit to like $10 or less and that’s a bargain. Amazon Japan also sells watermelon on line, how about that ?Kumamoto is the number one watermelon producing prefecture and their watermelon is cultivated in green houses. Sapporo's Densuke watermelon is famous for tense sweetness. In 2007 someone bid and bought 1 Densuke watermelon for nearly $7,000 at auction. Whoever it was must be a snob and not from Portland!
The coconut cream changes the red soup into pumpkin color. It’s a bit defeating but coconut cream make the flavor – wholesome and a tad sweet. Perfect for a hot Summer day.
- 5 cups seedless watermelon. Remove rind, cut in chunks
- 1 stalk of fresh lemongrass. Peel the outer layer of stalk and trim the bottom end then mince about 5 inches of lower part
- 1 good size shallot finely minced (roughly 4 Tablespoons)
- Young fresh ginger roots finely minced (about 2 Tablespoons)
- 2 cloves of garlic finely chopped
- 1 small hot Thai chili – seeds removed and chopped small
- 1-1/2 Tablespoons peanuts oil
- 1 cup coconut cream (not coconut milk)
- 2 Tablespoons lime juice
- Heat oil in large sauce pan and sauté lemongrass, shallot, ginger, garlic and Thai chili until garlic develops a pale brown color at low heat.
- Add watermelon and simmer at medium heat until watermelon has mostly broken down - 20 to 30 minutes.
- Remove from heat then puree the watermelon mixture with a hand held blender.
- Add coconut cream, lime juice and combine well. Salt and pepper to taste.
- Strain the soup through sieve, press to extract all the flavors. Chill in the refrigerator for about 3 hours. Add more lime juice, salt or pepper if necessary.
Variation – Put 1/2 cup of crab in a bowl. Mix with 1 Tablespoon of lemon juice or lime juice and add some lemon or lime rind. Combine well. Top the soup with the crab. Garnish with cilantro leaves or basil leaves for color.We had the soup with homemade rosemary focaccia bread.
Lovely garden reception and a picture perfect couple! We have known the bride since she was a baby. I was impressed by the stylish decorations throughout the property. This wooden frame was hung from a tree like a window. I wish I brought the camera…Honey, give me your iPhone…tell me again, is this the button to take photo?