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Cold tomato soup with cucumber and cantaloupe

Summer in Bangalore has been hot, and I do everything possible to stay cool. One of my favourite ways is to have a large bowl of cold soup. It is nourishing, light, and delicious.

This is a lovely soup that mimics gazpacho in many ways. The base is a lovely light tomato soup that is cool and flavourful. Make sure you get the sweetest tomatoes the summer market has; they are the main flavour in the soup. It is topped with crunchy cucumbers and sweet melon balls that complete the taste profile. Light, flavourful, and delicious, I make a large batch of this soup to last me a couple of days of healthy eating.

I adore Vong’s cookbooks. Before the darned show, this master chef was one of the most creative and technically perfect chefs in the world. I am occasionally intimidated by the perfection demanded in his books, but every time I do, the recipes are spectacular. His cookbooks are for those who aim to excel.

For more wonderful recipes from this cookbook, click here. 


2 lb tomatoes, finely diced

2 garlic cloves, minced

6 + more to garnish, basil leaves

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

2 tablespoons red wine vinegar

1/4 teaspoon sugar

Salt, to taste

1/2 teaspoon white pepper

1 cucumber, peeled and halved

1 cantaloupe, halved and deseeded

Add the tomatoes, garlic, basil, olive oil, vinegar, sugar, salt and pepper to a small pot and heat on a medium flame. Just before the soup forms bubbles on the edge, remove it from the heat. You do not want the soup to boil. Cool and purèe in a blender till very smooth. Pass through a fine mesh sieve, keeping the smooth tomato purèe. Chill for 2 hours.

Ladle the soup into individual bowls. Scoop the melon and cucumber with a melon baller. Add the balls decoratively to the top of the soup and garnish with a few basil leaves. Serve chilled.

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