Cream of Leek and Asparagus Soup
This delicate spring soup tastes even better if made a day ahead. Serve with fresh bread or croutons.
Serves: 6 to 8
- 2 tablespoons olive oil or other healthy vegetable oil
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 2 large celery stalks, diced
- 1 1/2 pounds slender asparagus
- 6 large leeks, white and palest green parts only, chopped and well rinsed
- 2 medium potatoes, peeled and finely diced
- 2 vegetable bouillon cubes
- 1 teaspoon dried tarragon
- 1 teaspoon dried basil
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
- 1 to 1 1/2 cups rice milk, as needed
- Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
Heat the oil in a large soup pot. Add the onions and celery and sauté over medium heat until the onions are golden.
Trim about 1 inch from the bottoms of the asparagus stalks and cut them into 2-inch pieces. Set aside the tips, and add the remaining pieces to the soup pot along with the leeks, potatoes, dried herbs, bouillon cubes, and just enough stock or water to barely cover.
Bring to a gentle boil, then lower heat, cover, and simmer until the vegetables are tender, about 20 to 25 minutes.
Puree the soup in batches and return to the soup pot. Or, simply insert an immersion blender into the pot and puree.
Return to low heat. Stir in the parsley. Add enough rice milk to give the soup a slightly thick consistency. Season with salt and pepper. Simmer over very low heat for 10 minutes longer. If time allows, let the soup stand for several hours off the heat, or, if making ahead, let cool and refrigerate until needed.
Just before serving, steam the reserved asparagus tips until bright green and tender-crisp. Stir into the soup, adjust the seasonings, and serve.
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