A simple and healthy soup using summer's abundance of zucchini and basil. This smooth puréed soup achieves a near impossible feat, it's velvety and creamy without any cream! Enjoy!
2 pounds zucchini, trimmed and coarsely chopped
3/4 cup chopped onion
4 garlic cloves, chopped
1/4 cup olive oil
3 cups vegetable stock
1/3 cup packed basil leaves
Cook onion and garlic in oil in a large, heavy saucepan over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 5 minutes. Add chopped zucchini and 1 teaspoon salt and cook, stirring occasionally, 5 minutes. Add 3 cups vegetable stock and simmer, partially covered, until tender, about 15 minutes.
Purée soup with basil in 2 batches in a blender (use caution when blending hot liquids). Season soup with salt and pepper. Serve in shallow bowls and garnish with basil leaves. Crème fraiche, optional.