Delicious Living
Cold Vegetable Summer Soup
  • 1 cup plain kefir or yogut
  • ½ cup red onion (minced)
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 2 teaspoons good salt
  • ½ cup parsley (minced)
  • 1 tablespoon fresh dill fronds (minced)
  • 1 clove garlic (pressed)
  • 1 teaspoon fresh oregano leaves
  • 1 cup cucumber with skin (diced)
  • 1 tablespoon fresh basil
  • ¼ cup green scallions (diced)
  • Garnishes (another cup sour cream, dill, ¼ cup halved and sliced radishes, or a splash of smoked olive oil

Cold Vegetable Summer Soup

Debra Stark | Delicious Living
  • Serves: 6 people

We all have fond memories of special food. When Debra Stark's family made the trek each summer to NYC, they always ate in Ratner’s, a famous Jewish deli founded in 1905 (it closed in 2002) that served only dairy foods. In its heyday, Ratner’s served Sunday brunch to 1,200 people each week, and patrons included Al Jolson, Fanny Brice, Jackie Mason, Elia Kazan, Walter Matthau, Groucho Marx, Robert Kennedy, Nelson Rockefeller… and even the occasional mafia member.

This is Stark's version of her favorite dish from Ratner's: their cold vegetable soup made with sour cream.

I have all these herbs growing in my garden. If you don’t have fresh herbs,  you can use dried herbs, but use about a third the quantity called for. Can’t do dairy? There are dairy alternatives that work just fine. Do use ONLY organic or grass-fed dairy products. It’s so important.

  1. Using a blender, food processor or Vitamix, quickly combine kefir, sour cream, parsley and garlic. Pour into a large bowl, add remaining ingredients, except garnishes. Refrigerate until very cold. Serve with whatever garnishes you choose (I use them all, especially more sour cream!)

Got chronic bronchial flare-ups, sinus infections or asthma? Try radishes because they decongest, and they are said to prevent and shorten the duration of UTIs. Don’t know the difference between yogurt and kefir? It’s the kind of bugs (bacteria) present. Yogurt is the beer of probiotic dairy foods, while kefir is the champagne.

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