Springtime Asparagus Soup
I promised myself that I wouldn’t talk about the weather again…but I do find it quite ironic that I’m posting this springtime asparagus soup on a day when it’s snowing outside. It is March. These things aren’t supposed to happen anymore.
Then again, one of my favorite things to eat on a cold day is hot soup! So maybe this dish is actually the best of both worlds–hot and creamy soup filled with the best of the best spring vegetables. Crisp green asparagus and sweet leeks.
I’ve been on a big soup kick lately. We made my favorite Mexican tortilla soup for the fifth time (in like three months) this past weekend–which is a new record for me. And this asparagus soup will be my next victim. I’ll make it over and over again as long as asparagus is in season.
There is something about pureed soups that I just love so, so much. This one is so creamy! And asparagus-y. And delicious and lovely.
Not only is this soup incredibly flavorful and creamy, but it also happens to be really easy to prepare–and contains only a handful of ingredients.
To add even more flavor, I chose to reduce the leeks in white wine, and then finish the soup with a pinch of cayenne pepper and fresh lime juice. Neither ingredient is noticeable, in fact you probably won’t even be able to taste them in the final dish, but they add an extra level of balance and dimension to the soup as a whole.
To finish the soup off and add extra texture, I reserved the asparagus tips and sauteed them over high heat, just before serving. They get all crispy and caramelized–but they still remain firm enough to hold their shape.
The next step involves drizzling each bowl with a little bit of heavy cream! It is optional, but definitely recommended. I seriously cannot wait to make this again.
[P.S. It’s St. Patrick’s Day. Green soup wins!]
Springtime Asparagus Soup
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2 large leeks (greens removed), chopped
- 1/2 cup dry white wine
- 1.5 lb asparagus (reserve the asparagus tips), cut into 1" inch pieces
- 4 cups low-sodium chicken stock
- pinch of cayenne pepper
- 2 teaspoons fresh lime juice
- 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
- asparagus tips
- heavy cream (optional)
- Heat the olive oil over medium heat in a large soup pot. Add the leeks and saute, stirring frequently, until soft and translucent, about 5 minutes. Do not allow the leeks to brown.
- Add the white wine and simmer the wine until it is almost entirely evaporated.
- Add the chopped asparagus (reserving the tips for later) and chicken stock, and bring to a boil.
- Reduce heat to a low and simmer for 15-20 minutes or until asparagus is very tender.
- Transfer the soup to a high-speed blender and puree until smooth. Return pureed soup to pot and return to heat. Season with salt and pepper. Finish with cayenne pepper and lime juice. Keep over low heat while preparing the garnish (see below).
- Heat the oil over medium-high heat in a small saute pan. Add the asparagus tips and saute for 2-3 minutes, or until caramelized and just fork tender. Season with salt and pepper.
- Serve the soup and garnish with the sauteed asparagus tips and a small drizzle of heavy cream.
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