Asparagus Soup

Asparagus is a member of the lily family. They are one of nature’s most perfect foods, containing no fat or cholesterol. Asparagus provides a good source of potassium, vitamin B6, vitamin C, vitamin A, thiamin and folic acid.

Commonly a green vegetable, although white and purple asparagus do exist, packed with so many nutrients on its own. Asparagus can be the one and only vegetable we can refer to as an over-achiever. Long stems that grow up to ten inches long, topped with tips that are flower-like and full of flavor. Their flavor has a woodsy overtone to them that makes asparagus a unique taste that can’t be compared to other vegetables.

Most asparagus soups are made with cream or milk to provide its creamy texture. This recipe also provides a creamy texture through a root vegetable instead of a dairy product. It is tasty and light and full of vitamins and minerals. A great lunch soup with a sandwich, plus it makes a great beginning to a delicious dinner.

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound of asparagus
  • 20 ounces of chicken broth
  • 2 medium Yukon Gold potatoes
  • 1 cup of baby spinach leaves
  • 1/3 cup of water
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced fine
  • 1 tablespoon of onion powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon of marjoram
  • 1/8 teaspoon of thyme
  • 1/8 teaspoon of salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon of pepper
  • 6 slices of crisp bacon

Directions:

1. Cut the ends of the asparagus spears, one to two inches. (They are usually tough and can make a soup stringy.)

2. Rinse well under cold water. Cut the asparagus spears into ½ to 1 inch segments and set aside on paper towels.

3. Rinse the baby spinach leaves and shake out excess water. Give the leaves a rough chop. Then, set the spinach aside on paper towels as well.

4. Peel potatoes, rinse under cold water and cut into small cubes.

5. In a large saucepan add the water, broth, potato cubes and all the spices together.

6. Turn heat up under pan to high and allow spiced broth mixture to come to a boil.

7. Once the broth comes to a rolling boil, wait one minute then turn the flame down to medium low. Cover the sauce pan and allow its contents to cook in a semi-simmer for 10 minutes.

8. While you are waiting for the pan to boil take out a medium fry pan and cook the bacon. Allow the bacon to get crisp without letting it get too dark or burnt.

9. Once the bacon is cooked completely set aside on paper towels to drain any excess fat and to allow the slices to cool.

10. Add the asparagus segments to the sauce pan. Keep the pan covered and cook for3 minutes.

11. Now add the chopped spinach leaves to the sauce pan. Pan remains covered and cook for an additional 3 minutes.

12. Check the spinach and asparagus. The spinach should be completely limp and the asparagus should be very tender. If not, allow to cook in the covered sauce pan for a few more minutes until everything is tender.

13. Now that all the vegetables are completely cooked transfer the contents to a blender or food processor. Or, use a submersible mixer if you have one. Blend the soup until it is creamy and smooth.

14. Pour soup into individual serving bowls.

15. Crumple one slice of crisp bacon on top of each bowl and serve.

16. Enjoy!

Suggestions:

  • Instead of the bacon for a topper add a few steamed asparagus tips. The steamed tips will have a deeper green coloring than the soup and offset it nicely. Plus the first two spoonfuls will have a piece of asparagus that you can sink your teeth into.
  • Serve with saltines or your favorite crackers. Oyster crackers are also good with soup. Instead of soaking up the soup too much and getting very soft the oyster cracker tend to stay afloat a lot longer than a broken saltine.
  • If there is any left-over soup it can be used as a sauce over pork roast slices, lump crab meat, tofu or cooked shrimp.

Check this weeks’ flyer at SuperValu in Winona. Potatoes are always on sale. All other ingredients can be found easily within the stores aisles. If you are down around Grenada, Spain’s is the place to go. The produce there includes many varieties that are not found in town. There may be something that you have been longing for, so pick that up too when you grab those asparagus spears to make your soup.