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We love this summer favorite for its rich, dairy-free creaminess, and its unexpected combination of flavors and textures.
2 cups toasted blanched almonds, whole, sliced, or slivered
5 large cloves garlic (more or less, to taste)
2 1/2 teaspoons salt
10 slices stale white bread
1 cup cold water
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
6 cups chicken or vegetable stock
Combine almonds, garlic, and salt in a food processor or blender. Process until almonds are completely ground. Add bread and water; process till smooth. With motor running, gradually add olive oil, then red wine vinegar. Process, stopping to scrape sides of bowl occasionally, until mixture is smooth. Pour mixture into a large bowl, and stir in stock. Store in the refrigerator until ready to serve.
To serve: Stir the soup a few times to make sure all the elements are combined. Ladle it into bowls, and top with generous amounts of croutons and green grapes, and a splash of olive oil. Makes 11 to 12 cups, 8 generous servings.