Berry soup: perfect for summer

August 01, 2007|By Kathy Manweiler | Kathy Manweiler,McClatchy-Tribune

When a craving for something cold and sweet strikes, many diets recommend raiding the fruit bowl instead of the ice cream carton.

That's good advice, and it's too bad that many people don't take it.

A recent study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that less than one-third of adults in the United States eat fruit two or more times a day.

The government asks most Americans to consume 1 1/2 to 2 cups of fruit every day.

But summer is a great time to get into the habit of eating more fruit, because many favorites like berries, peaches and cherries are in season.

Do you get bored eating plain pieces of fruit? This berry soup, slightly adapted from a Cooking Light recipe, is a creative way to add more fruit to your diet. Plus, it's so pretty that it makes an elegant dessert.

And if there were an all-star team of fruits and vegetables, berries would be some of the most valuable players because they're packed with antioxidants and fiber.

I use Splenda and a juice drink flavored with Splenda in this recipe to save calories, but if you'd rather use the real thing, sugar adds 24 calories per serving.

Or if you're looking for some middle ground, you could try using 2 tablespoons of sugar instead of 1/4 cup of Splenda in the soup and 1 teaspoon of sugar instead of 2 teaspoons of Splenda in the garnish.

The white wine adds a nice touch to this recipe, but if you'd rather leave it out, you could try using some white grape juice instead or substituting more of the light cranberry-raspberry juice.

SUMMER BERRY SOUP

Makes 4 servings

SOUP: 2 cups fresh raspberries

2 cups halved fresh strawberries

1/2 cup light cranberry-raspberry juice drink

1/2 cup dry white wine

1/4 cup Splenda

1/8 teaspoon cinnamon

1 carton (8 ounces) low-fat strawberry yogurt

GARNISH:

1 cup fresh blueberries

2 teaspoons Splenda

2 teaspoons light cranberry-raspberry juice drink

To prepare the soup, place first three ingredients in a blender and process until smooth. Strain the berry mixture through a sieve into a medium saucepan. Stir in wine, 1/4 cup Splenda and cinnamon. Bring to a boil over medium heat and cook for two minutes. Remove from heat. Place the soup in a large bowl. Cover the bowl and refrigerate the soup for about three hours or until completely chilled. Stir in the yogurt.

To prepare the garnish, place blueberries and remaining Splenda and juice drink in a blender. Process until smooth. Strain blueberry mixture through a sieve. Spoon 1 cup of soup into each of four bowls. Drizzle each serving with 1 tablespoon garnish.

Slightly adapted from Cooking Light

Per serving: 184 calories, 39 milligrams sodium, 27 grams carbohydrate, 1 gram fat, 7 grams fiber, 3 grams protein, 3 milligrams cholesterol. Recipe analysis provided by the Wichita (Kan.) Eagle.

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