Spring weather is finally arriving for most of the country and the farmers’ markets are overflowing with beautiful produce. One of my favorites is asparagus and today’s Creamy Asparagus Soup is a perfect way to celebrate the season!
Spring is the best time to visit farmers’ markets because the excitement mounts as the beautiful fresh produce arrives, brightening our meals after a long winter. In addition to asparagus, look for rhubarb, spring garlic and onions, Meyer lemons, fava beans and other tempting treasures.
Rich in flavor but low in calories, vegetarian, and dairy-free, this is an amazing soup. It is so smooth and creamy you will find it hard to believe there is no dairy in it. This is so good I would serve it at brunches, showers, or for dinner.
This soup came about because of a meal served to my husband many years ago by our friend Margie. She made a version of this soup that was incredible and for years The Artist raved about it. I never got her original recipe, but figured it wouldn’t be too hard to replicate with a few tricks.
If the asparagus is thick and woody, you can peel the stalks to reveal the tender centers. The easiest way is to lay the asparagus flat on a cutting board and use a vegetable peeler. Holding it flat on the board keeps the stalks from snapping as you work with them. You only need to peel the thickest part of the stalk – and if you are working with very delicate stalks, you won’t need to peel them at all!
Because of the potential stringiness of asparagus, you need a powerful blender to puree this soup. A food processor doesn’t do as good a job and an immersion blender will miss pieces leaving you with a chunky soup. Just be sure not to fill the blender too full because hot liquids expand – if it doesn’t have enough room you will wind up with hot soup all over your kitchen. Yep, the voice of experience talking here.
The Artist and I really enjoyed this soup – fresh and creamy without any dairy! The bright green color is stunning on your table, the soup is bursting with flavor and light enough to start any meal, and it is about as healthy as you can get. This is a vegan soup, dairy-free, gluten-free soup that everyone will love!
Welcome to Progressive Eats, our virtual version of a progressive dinner party where each course is held at a different home. With Progressive Eats, a theme is chosen each month, members share recipes suitable for a delicious meal or party, and you can hop from blog to blog to check them out. This month’s theme is Spring has Sprung! Hosted by Laura of Mother Would Know. We have a great mix of recipes including cocktails, appetizers, soups, sides, entrees, and desserts. Make sure you check out the links below.
Jane’s Tips and Hints:
All recipes say to trim the ends off asparagus, but how do you know how far up the stem to cut? Take one of the larger stalks, and holding it at either end, bend until it snaps. Use the longer piece as a guide to cut the rest of the bunch, discarding the smaller tough ends.
The only ingredient where there is any chance of gluten contamination is the stock. Be sure to read the labels carefully and use a brand that guarantees their products are gluten-free. If you have any questions, contact the manufacturer.
Spring Has Sprung – Dishes that highlight the ingredients and flavors of spring
- Fresh Strawberry Thyme Bellini – Mother Would Know
- Creamy Asparagus Soup (Gluten Free & Dairy Free) – The Heritage Cook
- Artichoke Focaccia – From a Chef’s Kitchen
- 2 lb fresh asparagus, tough ends trimmed
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- Kosher or fine sea salt and ground black or white pepper
- 1 med yellow onion, trimmed, peeled, and diced
- 1 med Russet potato, peeled and diced
- 1 clove garlic, peeled and chopped
- 4 cups vegetable stock
- 1 cup water
- Chopped pistachios, for garnish
- Chopped chives, for garnish
- Prep all your ingredients and set a wire sieve over a very large bowl; set aside. Pull out your blender and set it up.
- Trim off the tough ends of the asparagus stalks and discard (see Pro Tip above). If your asparagus is older or very thick, peel the stalks with a vegetable peeler (see Jane's Tips and Hints above for help). Cut off the tips and set some aside for garnishing. Cut the stalks into 1-inch pieces.
- Make the Soup: Place the oil in a stockpot or Dutch oven (at least 4-quart capacity) and heat on medium-high until shimmering. Add the asparagus pieces, tossing to be sure all are coated with the oil. Cook, stirring regularly, about 5 minutes.
- Add the onions to the asparagus. Cook over medium heat for 5 more minutes, stirring often. Add the potatoes and a generous pinch of salt. Cook, stirring often, about 10 minutes. Add the garlic and cook, stirring continuously, 30 seconds or until fragrant.
- Pour in the stock and water and bring to a boil. Decrease the heat to medium-low and simmer for 10 minutes or until the vegetables are very tender. Use a fork or knife to test doneness - if there is any resistance, cook a bit longer.
- When the vegetables are tender, puree the soup in a blender, working in batches (never filling it more than 1/2 full to allow for heat expansion) until very smooth. When each batch is done pour the puree through the sieve set over the bowl to remove any remaining solids. Repeat pureeing with remaining soup, again straining the puree into the bowl.
- Wipe out the stockpot and pour the pureed soup back into the pot. If it is too thick, add a little more stock to thin. Taste and adjust the seasonings as needed. Reheat gently over low heat. The soup can also be served at room temperature or chilled for hot summer days.
- To Serve: Cook the reserved asparagus tips in the microwave for 30 seconds. You want them cooked but still crunchy for texture. Ladle the soup into bowls and garnish with the asparagus tips, chopped nuts (if using), and a sprinkling of chives. Serve immediately.
- To Store: Transfer the soup to an airtight container, cover, and store in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Store cooked asparagus tips separately.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 245Total Fat: 15gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 12gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 664mgCarbohydrates: 22gFiber: 6gSugar: 6gProtein: 10g
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