Herbed Asparagus Soup

posted in: Main Dishes, Recipes, Soup-Stew | 3
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The first skinny, tender asparagus of spring hit our supermarket last week. Our favorite way to have it is simply steamed with some thinly sliced garlic and finished either with a squirt of lemon juice and some sea salt, or a few drops of roasted sesame oil and some toasted sesame seeds. When we can’t possibly eat another spear of steamed asparagus, I make this soup.Since asparagus is best when it’s super fresh, I’ll often cook up the whole pound within a day or so of bringing it home, and what we don’t eat right way gets put into the freezer to make the soup later. At the end of the recipe, I’ll explain how I do that.

Lately, I’ve been ramping up the flavor with some herbes de provence, a blend of basil, thyme, fennel and lavender. The lavender adds a lovely floral note to the soup that you could also achieve with some marjoram. I’ve also made this with a blend of tarragon, thyme and basil. This is loosely based on a soup in Vegetable Soups from Deborah Madison’s Kitchen.

I’m sending this over to Souper (Soup Salad & Sammies) Sundays, created and hosted weekly by Deb of Kahakai Kitchen.

Herbed Asparagus Soup1 lb asparagus
3 cups water
1 teaspoon salt
1 medium potato red or gold potato, about 6 ounces, 1/4 inch dice
5 green onions, green and white part, sliced
3/4 teaspoon herbs de provence
a squeeze of fresh lemon juice (about 1 teaspoon or to taste)
freshly ground black pepper

Snap off the woody ends from the asparagus spears. Add the spear ends and salt to the water in a medium saucepan. Simmer, covered, for 20-30 minutes. Strain out the spear ends, save the broth, and discard the ends. Add the diced potato and sliced green onions to the broth, cover, and simmer until the potato is tender, about 7 minutes.

Trim the tips from a few of the skinniest spears for garnish, if desired. Slice the rest of the asparagus into 1-inch pieces. Add the asparagus pieces and herbes de provence (or herbs of your choice). Simmer until the asparagus is tender, about 3-5 minutes. Transfer the soup to a food processor and blend, or use an immersion blender, leaving the soup a little chunky. Add lemon juice and black pepper to taste.

Garnish with reserved asparagus spears and serve. Makes about 5 cups/4 servings.

herbed asparagus soup from leftover asparagus

Start with a pound of asparagus. Snap the woody ends off as above and simmer in 1 cup water, covered, for about 20-30 minutes while you prepare the rest of your meal. Set aside. Cook up the whole pound of asparagus however you like and set aside the the portion of asparagus you don’t think you’ll eat right away. After dinner, strain the ends from the broth and discard, reserving broth. Purée the reserved asparagus with the broth, leaving it a little bit chunky, and transfer to a container of at least 4 cup capacity. Freeze.

Repeat the above procedure. When you estimate that you’ve set aside a pound of asparagus (estimating the weight before snapping off the woody ends), and you’re ready to make soup, thaw the asparagus purée. Simmer 1 teaspoon salt, 1 medium potato diced to 1/4 inch, and 5 or so sliced green onions in 1 cup water until tender. Purée and add the thawed asparagus and 3/4 teaspoon herbs. Heat gently. Season with lemon juice and pepper.

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3 Responses

  1. wow, very new, looks and sounds wonderful.

  2. I can’t wait for asparagus season to arrive here as well. For years I did not think of playing with the flavour of asparagus by adding herbs to it, but recently I changed my mind. I’m sure the provencal herb mix is lovely with it!

  3. Beautiful soup–asparagus is a favorite of mine. Thanks for sharing it with Souper Sundays. 😉

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