Saturday, April 4, 2009

Asparagus Soup

Asparagus is in season right now and there are some killer deals at the market. Our local grocery had a special last week and it was only .99 cents a pound. And I picked up a 2 pound bag at Costco for $3.99. Cream of Asparagus Soup is one of my all-time favorites. A vegetarian friend of mine came over for dinner last night and I made this for us. I served it with fresh olive bread. I adapted a recipe that I found on Epicurious, that used chicken broth. If you have that on hand you could just as easily use it. But the vegetable broth was wonderful... I loved this soup just the way I made it!

Cream of Asparagus Soup

2 pounds green asparagus
1 large onion, chopped
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
5 to 6 cups vegetable broth
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
crème fraîche, for garnish

Cut tips from 12 asparagus 1 1/2" from top and halve tips lengthwise if thick. Reserve for garnish.

Cut stalks and all remaining asparagus into 1/2-inch pieces.

Cook onion in 2 tablespoons butter in a 4-quart heavy pot over moderately low heat, stirring, until softened. Add asparagus pieces and salt and pepper to taste, then cook, stirring, 5 minutes. Add 5 cups broth and simmer, covered, until asparagus is very tender, 15 to 20 minutes.

While soup simmers, cook reserved asparagus tips in boiling salted water until just tender, 3 to 4 minutes, then drain.

Purée soup in batches in a blender until smooth, transferring to a bowl (use caution when blending hot liquids), and return to pan. Stir in heavy cream, then add more broth to thin soup to desired consistency. Season with salt and pepper, if needed. Bring soup to a boil and whisk in remaining tablespoon butter.

Garnish with asparagus tips and a dollop of crème fraîche.

No comments: