Appreciating Asparagus

Long before I appreciated asparagus as a vegetable, I had a fondness for the asparagus plant.  Have you ever seen one?  My mom grew asparagus in her garden (among many things – she had such a green thumb!), and I loved the delicate, feathery fronds…

Appreciating Asparagus

Asparagus-Tips

Long before I appreciated asparagus as a vegetable, I had a fondness for the asparagus plant.  Have you ever seen one?  My mom grew asparagus in her garden (among many things – she had such a green thumb!), and I loved the delicate, feathery fronds that felt so incredibly soft to the touch.  As a child, I found the foliage so intriguing and would incorporate it into little summer bouquets that I would piece together from the garden flowers.  As for the asparagus itself, well, I would eat it, but I found the plant much more interesting.

These days, I love asparagus and usually, we just aim for simple preparation.  We usually steam it, grill it, or put it in a stir fry.  Especially if we can get very fresh asparagus from the farmer’s market, they are so flavorful, that simple is best. But once in a while, I make it into Creamy Asparagus Soup, and it’s a nice way to change things up once in a while.

I made a batch the other day, and it was a perfect light supper on a chilly, rainy, spring day.  This soup makes a lovely first course, too.  There’s a hint of curry in it that adds a little depth of flavor, and a nice balance to a very fresh and healthy soup.

Creamy-Asparagus-Soup

Creamy Asparagus Soup

Ingredients

  • 1 pound asparagus, stalks sliced into 1 inch pieces, tips reserved
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon curry powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper

Instructions

In a small saucepan, bring the asparagus stalks and 2 cups of water to a boil.  Reduce heat, cover and let simmer for about 10 minutes or until tender.  Put water and asparagus into a blender and blend till smooth.

In a a larger saucepan, melt the butter over low heat and whisk in the flour to create a roux.  Whisk continuously for about 3 minutes.  Add the chicken broth whilst whisking and bring to a boil.  Continue to whisk. Add milk, whisk and allow to simmer for about 3 minutes. Add the blended asparagus, curry powder, salt and pepper, and reserved asparagus tips.  Bring to a boil, then lower heat to a simmer.  Simmer uncovered for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Serve immediately.

Adapted from Betty Crocker's New Choices Cookbook (the one cookbook my hubby contributed to our library from his bachelor days)

Comments

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  1. Debi(Table Talk)

    I love asparagus any time of the year, but especially now while at its peak. Milk vs. cream in this soup is a good thing…especially after vacation food ~

    Reply
    • Liren

      Hi Debi, I love this time of year when asparagus is plentiful AND tasty. Yes, the milk does lighten up the soup – less guilt :)

      Reply
    • Liren

      Hi Cherine, thanks for stopping by and for your lovely comment! This soup really is so colorful and tasty!

      Reply
  2. Anne

    This looks so delicious! I just bought a bunch of asparagus at the grocery store last night, so I can’t wait to try this out :)

    Reply
    • Liren

      Thank you, Anne! Hope you love the soup when you try it – please let me know if you like it!

      Reply
  3. Jenn

    Hi Liren!
    I don’t think I’ve ever seen an asparagus plant. I only know what the food looks like. Yikes!! I almost feel like one of those children Jamie Oliver was asking if they knew what such and such a vegetable was. *blush*.
    I wish asparagus was around all year. It’s so lovely roasted, with salt and pepper and garlic. Never had it in a soup. Will have to try. It is so pretty :)

    Reply
    • Liren

      Hi Jenn! Hey, don’t worry, if my mom wasn’t such an avid gardener, there is absolutely no way I would have known what an asparagus plant looks like. I bet if you showed a picture to most adults, they wouldn’t be able to match asparagus to plant. But I do hope you get to see one today, just so you can feel the fronds — so soft! I love asparagus with salt pepper and garlic, too. Perhaps a drizzle of Balsamic. Mmm. So many ways to enjoy it!

      Reply
  4. Jean

    Liren,
    Thanks for showcasing my all-time favorite veggie! Your soup looks wonderful.

    Jean

    Reply
    • Liren

      Thanks, Jean! It’s so nice to hear from so many asparagus fans – I did not anticipate that it would have such a following!

      Reply
  5. Anna

    First, your asparagus pictures are stunning. I love asparagus specially when they are crunchy with some butter sauce on top. But your soup looks very tempting, Wednesday I will definitely look for them in the FM.

    Reply
    • Liren

      Thank you, Anna :) I think I’ll be sad when the asparagus is no longer in season at our local FM – the ones in the stores are never as good! Hope you find some and try the soup!

      Reply
  6. Lisa Marie

    I LOVE asparagus! This is definitely getting bookmarked. Next time I’m at the market I’m going to have to pick up some asparagus and try this out. Looks too good to pass up.

    Reply
    • Liren

      Hi Lisa Marie! Thanks for stopping by – hope you do try it and let me know how you like the soup!! BTW, love your blog’s tagline! I imagine it’s a challenge to be a vegan in the very meat-centric Midwest!!!

      Reply
    • Liren

      Hi Betsy, this soup is definitely a great alternative. I find myself making this just when I’ve almost exhausted all the other usual possibilities.

      Reply
    • Liren

      Thank you, Cristina :) I think I must buy asparagus each time I go to the market!

      Reply
    • Liren

      Hi Linn! Indeed, spring=asparagus. And soup is definitely perfect in Sweden :)

      Reply
  7. Stella

    I love cream of asparagus soup, Liren. This recipe is so simple, and I like the idea of curry. I’m going to try this recipe within the week, since I’ve been buying so much asparagus lately.

    Reply
    • Liren

      Hi Stella, yes, the curry is a nice touch, a little unexpected! Let me know how you like it!

      Reply
  8. kathy

    Yummy! This soup is my favorite. Asparagus is really delicious. You can create different dish with it. Happy Easter :-)

    Reply
    • Liren

      Happy Easter, Kathy! Yes, I love asparagus. And it’s so good for you, too!

      Reply
  9. norma

    I can eat asparagus every day in any form. My favorite is the soup roasted and grilled. Great job!

    Reply
    • Liren

      Hi Norma, I’ve seen recipes that roast the asparagus first prior to pureeing them for the soup — I think it would be lovely, too. What I like about this recipe is that it’s fairly quick and easy!

      Reply
  10. Divina

    Asparagus is one of my favorite vegetables. I couldn’t say no to it and your soup is just beaming with color and goodness. Love the photos.

    Reply
    • Liren

      Thanks, Divina! I agree, asparagus is wonderful. And so good for you! I never feel guilty when I eat this soup.

      Reply
  11. Mdivani

    MMMMMMMMMMMMM!! Guess what just got added to my Easter menu for tomorrow!!! :)

    Reply
  12. Maria

    We have been enjoying asparagus all week. I will have to try your soup next. It looks wonderful.

    Reply
    • Liren

      Isn’t it wonderful when asparagus is in season? Hope you love the soup!

      Reply
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