Waiting in a hot tureen!
Who for such dainties would not stoop?
Soup of the evening, beautiful Soup!
- Lewis Carroll, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland
As evidenced by the poetic intro, I love soup. I whipped one up recently on one of our first chilly days of autumn. Ironically, I went with two super springtime vegetables - asparagus and artichokes.
I started out with the following ingredients:
1 lb marinated artichoke hearts (oil drained)
1 bunch of asparagus, woody stems removed and tops reserved
2 1/2 c vegetable stock (you can certainly use chicken stock or plain water - use what you have!)
2 cloves garlic
Chives, roughly chopped
1 tablespoon 2% Greek yogurt (not pictured above)
I heated a bit of olive oil in my tallest-sided pot and added the chives and garlic to sweat a bit. After a minute or two, I added the asparagus, stirred, and cooked for 3 - 4 minutes. Next came the artichokes.
I left them whole since I planned to puree the soup, but you can certainly slice them down if you want to get fancy with your presentation. While the veggies softened and cooked, I added salt and a LOT of fresh black pepper.
After about 5 minutes of the vegetables sauteing, I added in the stock. I brought it to a boil, reduced the heat, and let the whole thing simmer for about 10 minutes.
Then, I whipped out the immersion blender. I have been living with J for four plus years now and this was my first time actually using the tool myself. I always imagined me splattering the entire kitchen with food and/or burning myself in the process. Luckily this worked out and the soup turned out perfectly smooth.
Once blended, check for seasoning and add more stock if you want it to be thinner. Then, stir in the tablespoon of Greek yogurt. You can certainly use cream if you wish, but I love the tangy flavor from the yogurt as well as the protein. I also added in the asparagus tops, a trick I learned from the OG Of Asparagus Soup (my mother). You get the pretty flowery tops of the stalks as well as that nice tender bite in the otherwise smooth, velvety soup. Keep the soup simmering for another 5 minutes or so to be sure you heat the tops all the way through.
Serve up in bowls and top with more fresh cracked black pepper.
I patently love pepper. Start to finish, this took about 30 minutes, including the vegetable prep. The leftovers were delicious to take to work in my Thermos and reheated really well. It was so light but still quite filling. I served this on the side of a light, herby fish dish that I'll post later in the week!