This cream of asparagus uses yogurt instead of cream for a lower-calorie dish. Asparagus is sautéed in wild leeks and garlic and combined with white turnip, vegetable stock, and white wine to make a simple yet invigorating and elegant soup. The soup is pureed in the blender to get a smooth and creamy consistency and garnished with yogurt and cilantro. You can serve this as an appetizer or as a main dish with some crusty bread. You can also enjoy this delicious cream of asparagus soup either hot or chilled. Spring is the best season for preparing and cooking asparagus, although it is generally available the whole year. Select young asparagus with firm and bright green spears. The tips should be tight and perky and appear healthy not mushy or limp. Asparagus spears can be as thin as a pencil; the fatter ones are the more mature vegetables. The thinner asparagus are more tender and crisp while the thicker ones have a meatier and crunchier texture. If you are using thick asparagus for making soup, peel off the woody and tough exterior with a vegetable peeler. Choose asparagus that are uniform in size and as much as possible, cook it on the same day that you buy it. But you can wrap the bases of the asparagus with a damp paper towel and keep it in a plastic bag inside the refrigerator for up to four days. Alternatively, you can place the asparagus upright in a jar or container filled with an inch of water. Cove the asparagus tips and the container with a plastic bag. Asparagus is grown in sandy soils so rinse them very well with cold water before cooking. For larger asparagus spears, bend it until it snaps and throw away the woody end.
4 wild leeks OR 1 yellow onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tbsp cooking oil
4C asparagus, chopped (1 bunch)
1 small, white turnip, peeled and diced
5 C vegetable stock
1 C white wine
¼ C fresh cilantro, chopped OR 1 tbsp dried cilantro
1 C plain yogurt
Extra cilantro for garnish
1. The asparagus is washed and chopped discarding any woody stems.
The rest of the vegetables are washed and prepared according to the ingredients list
2. In the soup pot, combine oil, garlic, and leeks and sautee until softened
3. Asparagus, turnip, vegetable stock, wine, and cilantro is then added.
4. Heat to boil, then cover and simmer until the asparagus and turnips are very tender
5. Blend the soup in batches until smooth
6. Return pureed soup to soup pot, add yoghurt and heat through without boiling
7. Garnish with extra cilantro