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Release date: 12/28/2004.

You'll find this recipe in it, From AN EXALTATION OF SOUPS,
copyright © 2004
by Patricia Solley,
Published by Three Rivers Press.

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Bulgarian Cucumber Soup


Cold, sharp, and tart--a superb summer first course that refreshes while it stimulates the palate. This is a favorite recipe of Maestro Kurt Masur, brilliant conductor and music director of the New York Philharmonic Orchestra. Mr. Masur, a Silesian by birth (over the centuries, that's meant German, Polish, and Czech, depending on the year and torn history of central Europe), makes the soup himself, describing it as simple and delicious--both of which are true. It's also a favorite of Kathleane O'Leary, who created it as "Cucumber Vichyssoise" on her Undiet website, recommending that tofu can be substituted for yoghurt and other seasonings added. For possible cultural antecedents, see the article by Alice B. Toklas. Serve cold as a first course to 4-6. It's easy and fast to make and very low calorie.

Garnish: toasted almond slices

In a blender, puree cucumber and garlic--pulsing the blades to liquify the chopped cubes. Toss in the dill, salt, water, and yoghurt and mix well. Refrigerate at least 2 hours.

When ready to serve, ladle into bowls and sprinkle with toasted almonds.