Thursday, May 13, 2010

{ Asparagus Soup with Crème Fraiche }




















Snap, Crackle, Pop! I know you are thinking why is she going to talk about a breakfast cereal and how could that possibly tie in with Asparagus Soup. Well you can top the soup to add crunch with rice krispy cereal. Just kidding! The snap is the action you take when breaking off the tough portion of the asparagus stalk and then it pops as it breaks. You can also simply cut the stalk about 2 to 3 inches from the bottom and it will remove the majority of the tough, inedible portion.

Asparagus is synonymous with the entrance of the spring season. Once I see those spears at the farmer’s market and grocery stores, spring is here. Best to look for firm, fresh, spears with closed, compact tips and uniform diameter, so that all spears will cook in the same amount of time. Larger diameter spears are more tender.

We had friends over for dinner last weekend and I made this soup. They both happened to be vegetarians, so using chicken stock as I normally do was out of the question. I really wanted the fresh flavor of the wonderful asparagus to come through and remain as bright green as possible. I decided to use the blanching liquid and it made all the difference in the world. The flavor was amazing along with the dollop of crème fraiche, just brought it up a notch. I hope you make this soup before the asparagus season passes you by.














Asparagus Soup with Crème Fraiche

2 ¼ lb. Fresh asparagus, cut into ½ inch pieces
1 Large onion, diced
4 C. Water (From the asparagus you will blanch)
2 T. Butter
1 T. Olive oil
Salt and pepper
1 t. Fresh thyme leaves
Crème Fraiche
Chives, diced

Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add a generous scoop of salt to the water. Add the cut asparagus to the boiling water and cook for about 5 minutes. With a slotted spoon, remove the asparagus and place into a bowl. Reserve four cups of the blanching water. Discard the rest.

Add the butter and olive oil to the pot. Let melt over medium heat, add the diced onions and sauté until translucent. Season with salt and pepper and add the blanching water and cooked asparagus. Add the thyme leaves and let cook for about 10 minutes on medium heat. Using an emulsion hand blender, puree the soup. Taste and season with salt and pepper as needed. Top with crème fraiche and chives when you serve.

5 comments:

  1. Look so good. I love using Crème Fraiche in my dishes that call for cream, good stuff!

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  2. I love asparagus! This looks very good.

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  3. I love asparagus soup, and topping it with creme fraiche is the perfect touch! I also usually make mine with stock, so I will have to try your suggestion of using the blanching liquid.

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  4. I also love asparagus, your soup looks very good, I'll have to try your recipe, thanks for sharing.

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  5. This looks delicious. I cannot get enough asparagus in the spring and always enjoy different ways of cooking it. My favorite asparagus soup is made with stock just like the Cilantropist's and I top it with fresh goat cheese. But this looks delicious! Check out mine and let me know what you think-http://frenchpressmemos.blogspot.com/2010/04/spring-asparagus-soup.html

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