Creamy Asparagus Potato Soup
Serves 4 to 6
A creamy, earthy soup with those essentially French elements of leeks, potato and asparagus with a touch of fresh chives. Gently mash the potatoes for a rustic soup, or puree it to silky smooth refinement. The asparagus tips, set aside and sautéed make an elegant garnish.
Tip: the white stem ends of older asparagus can be filled with though fibers. Off season asparagus thicker than 1/2 inch should be trimmed by at least 1 inch from the bottom stem.
- 1 pound asparagus
- 2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon olive oil
- 1 leek, roots and tips of green parts trimmed
- 1/2 cup dry white wine
- 1 pound white potato, peeled and diced into 1/2 inch thick pieces
- 4 cups vegetable broth
- 6 springs fresh thyme or 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1/2 teaspoon salt or to taste
- 1/4 cup soy or coconut-based creamer
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped chives
1. Wash and trim the asparagus and dry 1/4 inch bottom ends of the stems. Slice off and set aside the tips, and dice the stems into 1/2 inch pieces. Slice leek in half, then dice into 1/2 inch slices. In a 3 quart soup pot heat 2 tablespoons of oil over medium heat and sauté leek for 3 minutes or until starting to turn soft. Add asparagus and sauté for 4 minutes, pour on wine and simmer for 2 minutes. Stir in vegetable broth, potatoes, and thyme springs or dried thyme. Increase heat to high, bring to an active simmer for 1 minute, then reduce heat down to medium-low. Cover and simmer for 22 to 24 minutes until the potatoes are very tender and mash easily when pressed with a fork.
2. While the soup is cooking, over medium heat in a small skillet sauté the asparagus with the remaining 1 teaspoon of olive oil for 1 to 1 1/2 minutes until the tips are bright green and crisp tender. Transfer tips to a dish and sprinkle with a pinch of sea salt.
2. Turn off heat and remove the thyme springs if using. Add the soy or coconut based creamer. Either use a potato mashed to mash the soup to a slightly chunky consisitency, or use an immersion blender to puree the soup into the creamiest, smoothest puree possible; take your time to make sure the soup gets very smooth. Stir in the chopped chives and salt, then taste the soup and season with more salt if necessary.
To serve, ladle soup into wide serving bowls and garnish each serving with a few sautéed asparagus tips.