Cooking With Glenn: Cold Cucumber Basil Soup


By Glenn Sawyer

We have had a weird summer so far in the Carolina’s. It’s not that it has been hot early, although it has been. It’s not that it has been cool through spring and into summer, again it has been. But it’s because it has been a roller coaster ride of ups and downs, rain and humidity, well quite simply put, not our normal transition from spring to summer.

As we hit those dog days where it is absolutely oppressive outside, too hot, too humid, quite frankly those summer days reminding us of the movies ‘A Long Hot Summer’ or ‘Cat on a Hot Tin Roof’ (if you haven’t seen them, you should). We really need something cool, refreshing and utilizes those cucumbers freshly picked yesterday.

We don’t usually think of soup on a hot day, but this chilled soup is just the ticket when it comes to a light, refreshing evening repast. Basil is part of the mint family and adds just the right amount of zest to the cucumber. In addition, the soup builds levels of flavor through the onion and thickness with the potato.

I served this as one of the courses at a luncheon for some ladies who are business
juggernauts a few weeks ago, it was a huge success. They were so intrigued they couldn’t stop talking about it.


  • 2 Tbs butter
  • 1 Vidalia onion, diced
  • 3 cups of chicken broth
  • 1 small white potato, peeled and diced
  • 3 cucumbers, seeded, diced but not peeled
  • 1 cup of Greek yogurt
  • 3 Tbs Basil, chopped
  • Salt and Pepper


Sautee the onions in butter till tender and starting to caramelize. Add the chicken broth and potato cook till the potato is soft. Add the cucumber, salt and pepper cover and cook till soft.

Place all of this in the blender with the yogurt and basil, blend till smooth and creamy. If you need to thin this mixture you can add more chicken broth or milk till the right consistency. Cover and chill for at least an hour.

To serve garnish with thinly sliced baby cucumbers and a dill sprig. You can mix this recipe up a bit by adding lemon zest, dill instead of basil or even mint but I find the mint can overpower the cucumber very quickly so go easy till you find the right amount.

The nice thing about this recipe is it can pair with salads or even can be used as a starter in a multi-course formal meal. It’s make ahead so it can be prepped a day or two before and dished up on the fly.

Till the next time, ‘Make it Your Own’,

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