Cream of asparagus soup where have you been?
Can you remember your last really good bowl of creamed soup? They’re pretty scarce these days so good for you if you can. Campbell’s Cream of Mushroom doesn’t count, nor does the fast-casual restaurant-driven broccoli cheddar, either.
The simple elegant Cream of Asparagus Soup has been elbowed aside, and it is well worth rediscovering. A real cream soup is a delicate and wonderful dinner starter or a lovely lunch dish. The method and ingredients are restrained so that the starring vegetable can shine. Springtime asparagus offers a great starting point for a cream soup. If you want to use the little tips for something else, make soup with just the stalks.
For cream of asparagus soup, simply cook some onion or leek in butter, add broth—chicken or vegetable—and bring it to a simmer. Next, add the asparagus or other vegetable. When the vegetables are tender, whiz it all up with a handheld immersion blender right in the pot, or you can puree in batches in the blender or food processor.
Stir in the cream and it’s soup. If the cream seems off-putting, remember that 1 cup of cream divided by 8 servings means just two tablespoons. You’ll be eating mostly vegetables. Half and half makes a nice creamy soup so skip the heavy stuff. Now don’t stop with asparagus—use this simple template with all kinds of vegetables like sautéed mushrooms, carrots, peas, cauliflower or potatoes. No need to raid the spice cabinet, either. Just season the soup with salt and pepper (white pepper if you have it).
- 2 medium onions or leeks chopped
- ¼ cup (1/2 stick) butter
- 4 cups chicken or vegetable broth
- 1 ½ to 2 pounds fresh asparagus, cut into 1-inch pieces
- 1 cup half and half or cream
- Salt and white pepper, to taste
Cook the onions in the butter in a soup pot over medium heat until translucent and lightly browned. Add the broth and bring to a boil.
Add the asparagus and simmer over medium-high heat until very tender. It will take between 5 and 10 minutes depending on the thickness of the spears.
About halfway through cooking, remove a few of the asparagus heads to garnish the servings. Reduce the heat to low and add the cream.
Heat over low heat, but do not bring to a boil. Makes about six servings.