Chilled Avocado Soup with Ginger and Lime

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Serves 6 - 8

2 tablespoons butter
½ cup finely diced shallots (about 3)
2 teaspoons peeled and finely chopped fresh ginger
4 cups low sodium chicken broth
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
½ cup half and half
2 large ripe avocados, halved, pitted, peeled
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
Chopped cilantro, for garnish (optional)
Lime slices, for garnish (optional)

In a medium saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter; add the shallots and ginger and sauté for a minute or two.  Add the chicken broth, lime juice, and cayenne pepper.  Bring to a boil, lower heat, and simmer for 3 to 5 minutes.  Pour into a bowl and let cool.

Put half and half and avocados into a blender; purée until smooth.  Add the cool broth mixture and blend again.  Cover the soup and chill until cold, about 3 hours.  Ladle into bowls and garnish with cilantro and lime slices, if desired.

As an alternative, for a cocktail party, pour the soup into shot glasses and serve as a shooter.