I have always associated almonds with health. It is a belief in India to eat soaked almonds for good memory, and intelligence. I still remember, when my children would go for their exams, my mother-in-law would give them soaked almond kernels, so that their brains will work better. It has always been a tradition that box full of almonds and other dry fruits will be brought home before the festivities of Diwali, when the winter starts to set in. We will snack on these the whole of winters, as they are believed to produce warmth in the body. They are also used as garnish in some of the sweet dishes. My first encounter with almond soup was during the wedding of my nephew. I liked it instantly.
This nutty soup will be the hero of your dining table, with rich aroma of almond tempting you to take a plunge into this soup. This mildly flavored soup is full of goodness of almonds. I have used milk in this soup. If you are a vegan, you can easily replace it with water. White vegetable stock should be used so that the color of the soup remains white . To prepare white stock, avoid using tomatoes, carrots, beets, or any such vegetable that may change the color of the soup. You may use gourd, cabbage, cauliflower, beans, potatoes, and onions to make white stock. If you are a non-vegetarian, chicken stock can also be used instead (if stock is not there, and you are feeling lazy to make it, you can use water, and milk).
Hot and tasty cream of almond soup
Recipe of cream of almond soup
Prep time: 15 minutes Cooking time: 10 minutes Servings: 4 to 6
Almonds, soaked and peeled — 15-20
All purpose flour (maida) –2 table spoon
milk — half cup
garlic paste of two cloves
butter –2 table spoon
white vegetable stock (or water) — 4 cups
black pepper powder –1/4 teaspoon
salt to taste
- Cut thin slivers of 4-5 almonds and toast them. You can toast them on a girdle, or microwave for few seconds, as I did.
- Blend rest of the almonds with some milk in a blender.
- Heat butter in a pan on medium heat. Add all purpose flour, and stir for few seconds. Take care not to brown the flour, else color of soup will also change. We want pearl white soup.
- Add small amount of vegetable stock (or water), and stir vigorously so that no lumps are formed. Add rest of the stock, and almond paste to it. Allow it to simmer for about five minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Add black pepper powder, and salt to taste.
Serve steaming hot, garnished with toasted almond slivers. If you want, you can add some cream as well, though I avoid it as the almond paste itself makes the soup thick and creamy. You can serve with slightly spicy accompaniments such as cutlets, or pizza slices.
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