A beautiful delicate spring soup with the colors of the first leaves of spring. A sophisticated soup with the definitive flavors of asparagus.
Whether served hot or cold serve it in smaller-than-usual portions.
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Amount Per Serving
Calories from Fat 42
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 5g
Saturated Fat 2g
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0g
Monounsaturated Fat 2g
Total Carbohydrates 14g
Dietary Fiber 5g
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
- 2 1/2 lbs. asparagus
- Kosher salt
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- 2 medium leeks, white and light green parts only, split lengthwise, washed and sliced
- 1 large white onion, thinly sliced
- 1 large shallot, sliced
- 2 cloves garlic, sliced
- Salt and freshly ground white pepper
- Crème fraiche, if serving the soup hot
- Unsweetened whipped cream, if serving the soup cold
- Snipped fresh chives, for garnish
- Using a vegetable peeler, peel the asparagus from about an inch below their tips to the ends of their stalks; reserve the trimmings. Snap the bottoms of the stalks off a point where they break easily and become woody, keep these trimmings too. Cut the spears in half. Bundle the trimmings in a piece of cheesecloth and tie with kitchen twine.
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil, adding 1 teaspoon of kosher salt for every quart of water. Have a colander at hand and some ice cubes at the ready.
- Toss the asparagus and the bundle of trimmings into the boiling water and cook for 4 minutes. Scoop the asparagus out of the pot and into the cold water for a minute to cool them down, and cover with ice cubes; set aside. Discard the trimmings; reserve 6 cups of the cooking liquid.
- Dry the pot, and add the oil and butter, and warm over low heat.
- Toss in the leeks, onion, shallot, and garlic, season with salt and white pepper. Stir until vegetables glisten. Cover the pot and cook gently for about 15 minutes, until the vegetables are very soft but not colored.
- Pour in the reserved cooking liquid and bring the mixture to a boil, reduce heat so that it simmers, cover and cook for 10 minutes. Remove the cover, toss in the asparagus and simmer, uncovered, for about 5 minutes.
- Working in batches, puree the soup in a blender. For a finer more elegant soup, run through a strainer. Taste the soup for salt and pepper, reheat it very very gently if you are serving it hot, or chill it serve cold.
- At serving time, top with a spoonful of crème fraiche if the soup is hot, or whipped cream if it's cold. Sprinkle with chives.
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