Cream of Asparagus Soup
EQUIPMENT: Frech chefs’ knife, cutting board, 2-quart saucepot with lid, measuring cups and spoons, large serving spoon and ladle.
PREPARATION TIME: 1 hour – Makes 5 or 6 servings
- 1 bunch asparagus (about 1 ½ pounds), trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 1 medium carrot, diced
- 1 stalk celery, diced
- 1 tablespoon Roux
- 1 cup Chicken Stock
- 2 cups whole milk or half-and-half
- ¼ teaspoon Italian seasoning
- ¼ teaspoon white pepper
- 1 pinch fennel seeds
- 2 tablespoons sour cream
- ½ teaspoon paprika
Place the asparagus, onion, carrot, and celery in the saucepan. Rinse with purified water (do not use tap water as it contains chlorine), pour the water off. The water than clings to the vegetables is sufficient for cooking the waterless way (waterless cooking retains minerals, vitamins, enzymes, and flavor). Cover the pan, open the vent, and cook over medium heat 275ᵒF. When the whistle sounds close the vent and turn the heat to low 200ᵒF. Do not peek. Removing the cover will destroy the vapor seal, lengthen the cooking time, and may cause the vegetables to burn. Cook about 20 minutes.
In a measuring cup, combine the roux and chicken stock.
Remover the lid and add the stock mixture, milk or half-and-half, Italian seasoning, wand fennel seeds to the saucepan and bring the soup to a simmer over medium heat 275ᵒF, stirring as the soup begins to thicken. About 10 to 12 minutes. Do not allow the soup to boil.
To serve, ladle soup into soup bowls or a tureen, swirl in sour cream, and sprinkle with paprika. Serve with warm French bread.
VARIATION: When the vegetables are cooked, puree all the ingredients with an immersion blender and finish the cooking process as described above.