This recipe is originally from Williams- Sonoma. The original recipe calls for onion, but when I made it I used shallots. I didnt trust the onion not taking over the delicate flavor of the asparagus.
- 1⁄4 cup unsalted butter
- 2 shallots, finely minced
- 1 stalk celery, finely minced
- 4 cups chicken stock or 4 cups mild vegetable stock
- 3 lbs asparagus, trimmed and cut into 1 inch pieces-reserve tips
- 2 potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2 inch chunks
- 2 tablespoons fresh basil, chopped well
- 2 cups heavy cream
- white pepper
- In a large saucepan over medium heat melt butter.
- Add the shallots and celery and saute for 3-4 minutes-do not brown.
- Add the stock, the cut asparagus minus 18 tips, potatoes and basil.
- Raise the heat to medium high and bring to a boil.
- Reduce heat and simmer gently for 20 minutes.
- In small batches puree soup in a food mill, blender or food processor.
- If using a blender or processor force puree through a strainer with a wooden spoon-this removes any asparagus fibers.
- Return puree to the pan, stir in cream and season with a bit of salt and pepper.
- Stir well, simmering for 3 minutes.
- Taste and adjust seasonings.
- Into a pan of salted, boiling water cook asparagus tips for 2 minutes.
- Ladle soup into bowls and crown each bowl with 3 asparagus tips each.
- Serve hot or chill and serve cold, again adjusting seasonings.
- TIP-when serving creamed soups they are never boiled once the cream is added, so heat the serving bowls with very hot water, pour out, quickly dry and ladle in the soup.
This soup is wonderful. We've made it several times, but with onions rather than shallots (although I LOVE shallots and can't wait to try it that way). We've also made it half and half and one using cream. Both ways are delicious, as is having it with with no cream or half and half at all. Also -- I used an immersion blender right on the stovetop and didn't bother with straining. Great recipe. Thanks
Wonderful soup. Husband really liked it and gave it a 9/10 which is a high rating for him... Added most of a medium onion instead of shallot and 3 ribs of celery and 2% milk instead of cream. Also added 1/3 basil while cooking and balance shortly before serving to protect the flavor of the fresh basil. All in all a very nice, fresh, flavorful, low cal soup.
The first asparagus of the season is here- I made this soup and thought it was great- used part light cream with the heavy cream and served it hot.