Recipe: Cream of Asparagus Soup

Here is a delightful recipe for an easy and delicious cream of asparagus soup.

2 pounds green asparagus
1 large onion, chopped
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
5 to 6 cups chicken broth
½ cup heavy cream
¼ teaspoon fresh lemon juice, or to taste
½ teaspoon white vinegar
1 teaspoon sugar

Cut tips from 12 asparagus spears ,1 1/2 inches from top and halve tips lengthwise if thick. Reserve for garnish.

Cut stalks and all remaining asparagus into 1/2-inch pieces.

Cook onion in 2 tablespoons butter in a 4-quart heavy pot over moderately low heat, stirring, until softened. Add asparagus pieces and salt and pepper to taste, then cook, stirring for 5 minutes. Add 5 cups broth and simmer, covered, until asparagus is very tender, for 15 to 20 minutes.

While soup simmers, cook reserved asparagus tips in boiling salted water until just tender, for 3 to 4 minutes, then drain. Then shock in ice water to maintain its color.

Purée soup in batches in a blender until smooth, transferring to a bowl (use caution when blending hot liquids), and return to pan. Stir in heavy cream, then add more broth to thin soup to desired consistency. Season with salt and pepper.

Add lemon juice and garnish with asparagus tips.