While grocery shopping these last few months, I've stood in front of those lovely green spears and have picked out the best bunches. A few weeks ago, though, I stared at those bunches at the market and wondered, "What on earth can I do with these that I haven't already?"
The answer came to me from one of my favorite cookbooks, Martha Stewart's Great Food Fast. It's an asparagus soup that tastes great, even when it's warm outside! Here is the recipe, slightly altered by me:
3 tbsp olive oil
1 1/2 cups chopped shallots
1/2 tsp dried thyme
3 tbsp all-purpose flour
3 lbs asparagus, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces
6 cups vegetable or chicken stock
Salt, to taste
Fresh lemon juice, to taste
In a large saucepan, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add shallots and thyme; cook until soft, about 5 minutes. Add the flour; cook until incorporated, stirring constantly, about 1 minute.
Add the asparagus and stock; season with salt. Cover and bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer, until the asparagus is bright green and just tender, 2-4 minutes.
Puree the soup with a hand blender or working in batches in a regular blender. Add a splash of lemon juice if desired.
This recipe yields roughly 8 cups which can be split up into 4 filling 2-cup bowls at about 170 calories per serving!