Silken tofu thickens this Lightened Cream of Asparagus Soup recipe, making it a substantial vegan soup perfect for an early spring meal.
It’s been a long winter here in the Boston area. In fact, we just surpassed the record for snowiest winter on record for the area. So when I saw some good looking asparagus at the store recently, I knew I had to grab some in hopes that spring can’t be too far behind. Keeping things healthy, I came up with this Lightened Cream of Asparagus Soup recipe.
Asparagus is one of those veggies I very rarely eat out of season. It’s one of the first spring vegetables to arrive, so I like to enjoy it as a celebration of the season. Now granted, there’s no asparagus making its way through the New England snow yet. But if it’s being harvested somewhere in the Northern Hemisphere, I know it can’t be too long before we have some local asparagus, right?
Pasta is the most popular way we enjoy asparagus, but it was still chilly when I spied the the tasty looking asparagus, so soup came to mind. I’ve been having good success with thickening vegetable soups using silken tofu–see for instance this Carrot Ginger Soup–so decided to do the same with this soup. Once again, the immersion blender comes in handy here.
How to chop asparagus: You don’t want to eat that rough, thick stock at the bottom. Take a stock of asparagus, hold it at the two ends and snap it. The portion that comes off with the tip should be good eating, and you can discard the stock portion. Repeat it with a couple more stocks to check, and start chopping the rest to match the ones you’ve tested. By the way, you don’t need to throw away the stocks. Throw it into a ziploc bag and store in the freezer to use for stock later.
On the table in 30 minutes: All you need to chop here is an onion, the asparagus and garlic. The asparagus cooks quickly so you can get this meal into your soup bowls in about 30 minutes. I think you’ll find the Lightened Cream of Asparagus Soup has plenty of substance, and an be the basis of a tasty, light meal to welcome spring…or wish it were here already!
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 lg sweet onion, chopped
- 1 small carrot, peeled and chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 4 cups vegetable broth
- 2 cups water
- 2 bunches asparagus, stocks removed and chopped
- 1 tsp herbes de provence
- ½ tsp white pepper
- 8 ozs silken tofu (1/2 of a typical package)
- tbsp lemon juice (optional)
- Heat the olive oil in a large soup pot on medium heat. Add the onions to the pot, sauté until it softens, about 5 minutes.
- Stir in the carrot, cook for a few more minutes. Add the garlic, cook for another minute.
- Add the asparagus, stir to combine with the onion mixture. Reserve a few asparagus tips for presentation at the end.
- Add the vegetable broth and water, along with the herbes de provence.
- Bring the liquid to a boil, then reduce heat to simmer on medium. Cook until the asparagus is tender about 20 minutes.
- When the asparagus is tender, puree the soup with an immersion blender. Add the white pepper and silken tofu, puree to incorporate the tofu.
- Serve the soup hot, topped with a bit of thinly sliced asparagus tips for presentation.