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Easy Easter Asparagus recipes abound just now, so be sure to count this gorgeous and creamy asparagus soup among your recipes to try!
With much gratitude and appreciation, this recipe courtesy of our friends at Southern Living Magazine!
Asparagus season is upon us, the first of Spring’s eager harvest to push through the still semi-frozen earth. Fresh asparagus spears are an eaters delight when an easy asparagus recipe is on hand.
I myself carry a list in my wallet. On it are names of all kinds of fresh produce for which I know I have solid standby tasty recipes for.
That way, I’m not walking away from the freshest strawberries or youngest microgreens at the moment I see them. If they’re on the list, it’s a sure thing I can purchase them and have a recipe awaiting them.
Ingredients for Creamy Asparagus Soup
- fresh thin asparagus spears
- olive oil
- Yukon Gold potatoes
- fresh garlic cloves
- chicken stock
- Kosher salt
- fresh parsley
- heavy cream
- orange juice
- chopped cooked bacon
- Parmesan cheese
- drizzle heavy cream
- minced fresh parsley
- lemon wedges passed tableside
How This Recipe Came About…
Our Easter dinner is more of an Easter buffet that begins at Noon and goes all afternoon.
In addition to the Easter ham and leg of lamb, I prepare a myriad of simple recipes, mainly basic recipes for side dishes, that are favorite ways for us to enjoy while celebrating.
Easy Easter Recipes for Your Holiday Celebration
- Endive Gratin with Ham and Smoked Gruyere
- A Classic Strawberry Panna Cotta Recipe
- Old Fashioned Hummingbird Cake Recipe
The recipe I am sharing today can be a perfect side dish to a main dish salad, or an easy weeknight dinner main dish. For our Easter spread however, I serve it ahead of the main course.
I adopted this recipe because it screams Spring and stretches the amount of food I have to offer. Creamy Asparagus Soup is very filling and takes less time and ingredients to prepare it than say an asparagus tart or other fancy asparagus dish.
Asparagus is only around (truly at its freshest) for a very short window. I plan around the vegetable if I’m honest. Making a soup from it extends my opportunity to enjoy it.
I allow guests to choose between a chilled crab and asparagus salad or this gorgeous creamy soup. Both are always a huge hit, surprisingly with the kids, too.
Easter Asparagus Recipes
If you are anything like me in the kitchen, you like your tried-and-true recipes, yet you’re always trying something new. Sound familiar?
Each year, I try to come up with new Easter asparagus recipes and believe me, I’ve tried MANY. One year, I was left with an entire platter of pencil thin asparagus fries because the recipe write-up claimed it was kid friendly. Not so much here…
If you are in search of a beautiful quiche and want to incorporate asparagus, consider instead an easy Asparagus and Ham Frittata.
It’s among my favorite of Easter asparagus recipes and fits beautifully if serving an Easter Brunch versus a formal sit-down dinner.
How To Trim Asparagus?
Are you a snapper? I was a snapper I’ll admit.
Holding a single stalk of asparagus with both hands and then bending it gently causes it to ‘snap.’ Used to be that this process was considered the correct protocol for rendering the end with the tip the freshest part of the stalk.
According to Southern Living Magazine, the truth is that the bend-and-snap method can actually waste perfectly good asparagus. The best way experts and chefs agree, is to use your chef’s knife and cutting board.
Line up all the spears in a row and slice off the bottom of the stalk right where they turn from white into green. Now you’re left with perfectly fresh and amazing tasting asparagus to cook with.
Don’t toss those tough ends though. Add them instead to the bag of vegetable scraps in your freezer for making easy homemade chicken stock down the road.
How to Make Creamy Asparagus Soup?
Basic Recipes Like This Soup are Great to Keep Handy
This is truthfully the most basic of recipes. The prep time is next to nothing, and depending on my mood, I taste as I go and leave things simple or add to it to taste.
In the past, I’ve begun this soup many ways. I’ve started it as a roasted asparagus recipe and also even used leftover Parmesan asparagus before turning it into soup.
A Fail Proof Ingredient for Tempering Bitterness
I’ve enhanced the finished product with everything from black pepper to red pepper flakes, but neither really made sense. The strangest ingredient in today’s recipe is the orange juice, but…it’s also the MOST IMPORTANT INGREDIENT. Why?
Asparagus comes across as bitter to many eaters. People either love it or hate it.
The sugar and acidity in the orange juice temper the flavor of the asparagus. That and the great combination of sauteed leeks (sweet) and softened Yukon’s (buttery) make the only thing this soup needs is a sprinkle of salt.
And, if you’re like me and lean toward savory every time, the optional crumbled bacon or Parmesan cheese will surely satisfy that ‘need’ to add salt.
Preparing Asparagus for Easter Asparagus Recipes
You’ll need two pounds of fresh asparagus for this recipe. Look for thin crispy asparagus stalks when purchasing.
Line the stalks up in a single layer on your cutting board and use a sharp chef’s knife to trim the base of the asparagus where the stalks turn from white into green. The bright greenish purply end with the tip is the crisp asparagus portion you’ll use for this recipe.
Cut the spears into 2-inch pieces on the diagonal reserving 1 cup of just the tips. These will be sauteed and used to garnish the soup at the end.
Begin the Sauté
Set your Dutch oven atop a burner on medium-high heat and add a teaspoon of a good quality olive oil. Add the cup of reserved asparagus tips and sauté for 2 to 3 minutes, stirring them to promote browning but avoid burning.
Transfer the tips to a plate and reduce the heat to medium. Add a couple tablespoons of additional olive oil and the thinly sliced white and light green parts of two leeks that you’ve washed very well.
Cooking the Supporting Ingredients
Cook the leeks for 4 to 5 minutes stirring again to promote light golden browning, but moreover, softening. Toss in some prepared Yukon Golds (peeled and cubed) and a few fresh garlic cloves that you’ve taken time to mince.
Cook for 1 minute only before adding 4 cups of unsalted chicken stock. Your choice entirely, but I like to warm my chicken stock on a back burner before I embark on this recipe.
It is not required but I find it helps to break the Yukon’s down that much faster. Either way, once added warm or cold, you will bring the entire pot to a boil.
Cook this potato-leek-chicken stock mixture until the potatoes have softened and are somewhat tender, about 6 to 8 minutes. Add in some Kosher salt and the remaining uncooked asparagus pieces.
Emulsifying Creamy Asparagus Soup
I let this mixture go for anywhere from 5 to 8 minutes because I want the asparagus pieces tender. Then, I remove from the heat and add in a full 1/2 cup of chopped fresh parsley leaves and young stems.
Use an immersion blender if you have one to process the mixture. If you do not have an immersion blender, you will likely need to process the mixture carefully in multiple batches in your regular blender.
How to Serve
Once everything is nicely pureed, stir in 2 tablespoons of orange juice and 1/2 cup heavy cream. Add ladlesful of the Creamy Asparagus Soup to serving bowls and drizzle with additional heavy cream if desired.
Garnish with the previously sauteed asparagus tips and any other optional garnishments from the list above. I love the soup with house made croutons and Parmesan cheese, but I find room temperature crumbled goat cheese delicious as well.
A drizzle of olive oil and a sprinkle of sea salt works well, too!
If You Like This Recipe…
…you might also like:
Creamy Asparagus Soup – Easy Easter Asparagus Recipes
- 2 pounds fresh thin asparagus spears trimmed and cut into 2-inch pieces on the diagonal, 1 cup of tips reserves
- 2 tablespoons + 1 teaspoon olive oil divided
- 2 large leeks well washed to remove sand and grit; thinly slices white and light green parts only
- 1 ½ cups Yukon Gold potatoes peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 4 cups unsalted chicken stock may warm on a back burner over low heat if desired; I find this moves the recipe along quicker
- 1 ½ teaspoons Kosher salt
- ½ cup parsley fresh, chopped leaves and young stems
- ½ cup heavy cream plus additional for drizzling
- 2 tablespoons orange juice
optional for garnish
- croutons homemade or store bought
- Parmesan cheese
- bacon cooked, crumbled
- parsley fresh, minced
- lemon cut into wedges for passing tableside
- Heat 1 teaspoon of the olive oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high. Add reserved cup of asparagus tips. Cook, stirring occasionally, 2 to 3 minutes. Use a slotted spoon to transfer to a plate.
- Reduce heat on Dutch oven to medium and add the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil to Dutch oven. Add the thinly sliced leeks and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, 4 minutes. This step is required to promote browning but be careful not to burn the leeks. Add potatoes and minced garlic cloves and cook, stirring constantly, 1 minute. Add all of the unsalted chicken stock at once. Bring to a boil over medium-high. Cook until potatoes are semi tender, 6 to 8 minutes. Add kosher salt and uncooked asparagus pieces and cook 5 to 8 minutes.
- Remove the pot from heat. Stir in chopped fresh parsley. Puree using an immersion blender until smooth. Stir in heavy cream and orange juice and place back on very low heat to warm through.
- Ladle soup into individual serving bowls. Drizzle servings with heavy cream and top with the cooked asparagus tips. Garnish additionally, if desired, with chopped cooked bacon, additional parsley, a dusting of Parmesan cheese, croutons, or basic wedges of lemon passed tableside. Sea salt and olive oil also work well to be minimal while keeping the dish bright.
The nutrition value can vary depending on what product(s) you use. The information below is an estimate. Always use a calorie counter you are familiar with.
Please note that table salt and iodized salt are NOT substitutions for Kosher salt. Do not deviate unless otherwise specified.