Spring is shyly tiptoeing its way into our days as the sun rises earlier every morning and sets later with every evening. Most days are still not warm enough for me to take the boys out, but we’ve taken an evening stroll here and there. The ducks and geese have returned to the big pond in our backyard and make enough noise to outdo any rooster in the morning. I am not complaining though, I find it to be a nice reminder that nature is still around even in the midst of a busy suburban neighborhood.
As I browsed the fresh produce section in search of ingredients for my husband’s upcoming birthday dinner, a few weeks back, the two and a half pound bag of fresh asparagus just couldn’t be passed up. I told myself I would find a creative way to cook up whatever we didn’t use, a nice little challenge for someone who’s never made anything other than steamed asparagus to go with our favorite steak dinner.
Having never made or eaten asparagus soup before now, this recipe has become a staple in my kitchen. Uncomplicated, light and flavorful, I like to pair it with stuffed eggs or open faced tuna sandwiches that include boiled eggs and spring onions.
Velouté d’asperges (Cream of Asparagus Soup)
2-3 tbsp ghee
6-8 spring onions, sliced thinly
2 lb asparagus, trimmed
4 garlic cloves, smashed
2 tsp kosher salt
2 cups chicken stock
2 tsp lemon juice
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
4 Tbsp heavy cream
Heat a 2-3 quart saucepan over medium heat. Add the ghee and spring onions and sweat for 2-3 minutes.
Cut the trimmed asparagus into 2 inch pieces and add into the saucepan along with the smashed garlic and salt. Stir well, cover and allow to sweat for 10-15 minutes. The asparagus should be tender and have released their juices.
Reserve 10-12 asparagus tips for garnish if desired and transfer the remaining cooked asparagus mixture into a blender and blend on low until everything is more or less broken down. Add the chicken stock, lemon juice and cayenne pepper, increase the speed and blend on high until velvety smooth.
Return the blended soup to your saucepan and heat on low flame. Stir in 3 tbsp of the heavy cream, reserving the remaining 1 tbsp for garnish. Taste and adjust the salt if necessary.
Serve the soup hot, drizzled with the reserved heavy cream and top with asparagus tips. Enjoy!