I love asparagus in any form. This soup is simple to make and very refreshing. Serves 4-6
1 large bunch of Asparagus (approximately 350 gm.)
2 tbs. Butter or olive oil, I prefer butter
500 ml. vegetarian stock. You can use stock pot or stock cubes or stock powder mix.
Salt to taste
Pepper A good sprinkle
150-200 ml. Cre fraiche tub
Wash and pat dar asparagus.
Cut off the tough lower ends of the asparagus. If you snap the ends, they should break cleanly, with a 'click'. If they bend and feel fibrous, cut that portion off.
Cut off about 2 cm. of the tips of about 8-12 stems, for garnish.
Chop up the rest of the asparagus into 1 cm. pieces.
Make stock in hot water by dissolving whichever type of stock you are using (pot/cube/powder).
Heat a pan and melt butter.
Add asparagus tips, fry for 5-7 minutes. Take out and keep aside for garnish. Do not overcook if you want them to remain shiny green.
In the remaining oil, fry the chopped asparagus stems for 5-6 minutes. You can add a small onion here, but I prefer it without onions.
Turn the heat down, cover and cook for another 5-6 minutes, until lightly cooked, but not mushy. Do not overcook, or they will loose their colour.
Add stock, bring to boil.
Season with salt and pepper. Remember that you have used stock which is already salted. So add only as much salt as needed after tasting. Simmer for 20 minutes.
Blend it with a hand blender. If using a plastic blender, allow the soup to cool a little before blending.
Strain it through a wire strainer to remove and fibres.
Add and stir in cre fraiche. Check and adjust seasoning (salt and pepper).
Serve in bowl with 1-2 tips (saved from step 7) floating on top.
This soup can be served chilled, but I prefer it hot.
Also see Soup Selection.
If you do not have cream, replace half the water with milk.