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For my blogday, I asked people to suggest things they'd like to see on the blog. My good friend Cassie asked for some asparagus soup, and since this hot weather is about to send the asparagus packing, it's now or never! I had never had asparagus soup before, and I have to say this is not my favorite preparation of this vegetable. Upon first taste I thought maybe I hadn't seasoned it well, or maybe it was too much stock and not enough vegetable, but after letting it rest a day in the fridge it turns out it was actually a pretty nice soup. It's just very, very subtle. And since asparagus has such a short season, I'd rather just barely saute it and toss with pasta, or shave it and pile it on a pizza, or steam it and dip it in a creamy sauce. But! If a velvety, subtly-flavored light green soup sounds like just the thing for you, give this a try!
Cream of Asparagus Soup
I've seen several recommendations from other sources that if you puree asparagus, you should strain it to remove any lingering tough or woody pieces, but I found it to be an unnecessary step. My soup was plenty smooth without straining. Follow your heart, though, and make sure to trim your asparagus well. Peeling the hard edges might also help with especially woody asparagus.
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 bunch spring onions, or 1/2 Vidalia onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1 pound fresh asparagus, trimmed and cut into 1- to 2-inch lengths
4 cups water, vegetable stock, or chicken stock
1/2 cup heavy cream
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
salt and pepper to taste
In a soup pot, warm the oil over medium heat. Add the onions and garlic and saute about 3-5 minutes, until slightly softened. Add asparagus and toss together. Season with salt and pepper, add the water or stock, and simmer until the asparagus can be easily smashed against the side of the pot with a spoon, about 10-15 minutes (more or less depending on how thick your asparagus is). Puree in batches in a blender, and then return to the pot over low heat. Stir in the butter and cream, taste, and adjust seasoning. Serve warm or cold.
Yield: about 4-6 servings