Strong Arms for Kids

 
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After reading Animal, Vegetable, Miracle, Barbara Kingsolver made me so jealous of her fresh asparagus that I went out to a local farmstand and bought the freshest asparagus that they had available.  It still didn't taste the way she describes the taste of her asparagus but it was definitely less bitter than the stuff you buy in the supermarket.  The recipe for this soup was completely random, well there is a method to my madness, sort of, but I definitely didn't know what I was getting myself into when I started roasting the asparagus soup.  I started out wanting to make the Roasted Asparagus soup from Fat Free Vegan Kitchen until I realized I didn't have any cashews to make the soup creamy.  I thought about using walnuts but then decided that might make the soup gritty/ gross.  I was a bit stuck and almost desperate enough to use milk, until my mom thought about using tahini.  That didn't seem like such a bad idea, but I originally wanted to use thyme as my spicer-upper but I thought the thyme wouldn't go well with the tahini, so I decided to go with a hummus themed soup and it actually turned out pretty well.  BTW I had no idea how easy it is to make asparagus soup!!


RECIPE

2 lbs asparagus
1 onion, sliced
2 cloves garlic, peeled
olive oil

2 cups vegetable stock or water
1 heaping spoonful tahini
1 tsp cumin

2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
grated peel of 1/2 lemon
grated Parmesan cheese
salt and pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 450F. Place the asparagus spears on a baking sheet and drizzle some olive oil over the spears. Roast for 10 minutes. Turn asparagus and sprinkle the onion and garlic over it. Roast for about 10 more minutes, until asparagus is very tender. If anything looks like it’s browning too much, take it out. (Important Note: These directions are for thicker asparagus. Thin asparagus may take much less time so start with 6 minutes, turn and add onions and garlic, and check again in 5.)

While the asparagus is roasting, blend 1/2 cup of the broth with the tahini until smooth.

When the asparagus is done, select several of the best-looking spears, remove the tops, and set aside to use as garnish. Cut the remaining asparagus into pieces and put it and the onion and garlic into the blender, along with the remaining broth. Cover the blender and blend on high until perfectly smooth.

Pour the soup into a saucepan and heat until hot, stirring frequently. Once its hot, turn off heat and add the lemon juice and grated lemon peel.  Add salt and pepper to taste.

Pour into bowls and sprinkle with parmesan cheese and garnish each bowl with the reserved asparagus spears and serve hot.

Servings: 4
Yield: 4 cups
 


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