Sunday, June 5, 2011

Vidalia Onion and Asparagus Soup

Last week, I combined two seasonal veggies to make a simple and delicious soup: Vidalia onions and asparagus. Together, they make a mild, creamy “green” soup that’s light enough for this time of year but warming if the weather dips, as it’s been doing intermittently over the last couple of weeks.

I also want to offer a safe way to blend hot soups if you don’t have an immersion blender, which is the safest way to do it. A couple of weeks ago, I burned my arm when the pressure from the hot soup inside popped the lid off the blender. I guess I’ve been lucky up until this point because I’ve been able to successfully blend a blender-full without it exploding. Maybe this time it was simply too hot.

For the soup:

Vidalia Onion and Asparagus Soup

Grapeseed oil

2 large Vidalia Onions, sliced thin

1 lb asparagus, woody ends removed and chopped into 2” pieces

vegetable broth, heated


Carmelize the sliced onions in the oil in a Dutch oven or fry pan by sautéing over medium heat until the onions are tender and “thicken” and begin to turn brown. I added some fresh chive flowers, but those are optional.

Combine the asparagus and onions in a medium saucepan. Use some of the hot broth to deglaze the onion pan and transfer the liquid into the pot. Add just enough additional broth to cover the vegetables. Simmer uncovered until the asparagus is tender.

Blend the soup in batches, then return it to the pot and season with pepper and additional herbs if desired.

I actually garnished my soup with dulse flakes and it was delicious.

A trick I found for safely blending hot soups: Add a small amount of the unblended soup to the blender. Put the cover on and turn on the blender. As the soup is blending, partially remove the cover and slowly add ladles-full of additional soup, until it reaches a safe level that won’t spill over. When the soup is completely blended, transfer it into a bowl.

Continue this way until the entire pot of soup is blended. I found that it’s much better to blend large volumes rather than small and this can be accomplished with hot liquids by building the volume up slowly without the top on so that the steam can escape. Hopefully you’ve not had the experience of burning a body part in the kitchen!!

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