I may have mentioned that we’ve been eating a bit of asparagus lately.
I started feeling ever-so-slightly guilty about tossing away the stem ends of the green asparagus.
For those who don’t know, white asparagus is treated differently – it’s peeled and just a tiny bit of the stem end is trimmed.
The green is snapped and sometimes there are 2 or even 3 inches not used.
Surely there’s something that I could do with the tough parts other than add them to the compost…
Soup seemed a likely candidate.
I found lots of recipes for asparagus soup using the heretofore wasted stem ends.
Well, if all of those people could do it, so could I.
I made soup.
Apparently the stem ends on the other side of the pond are more tender then the stems ends here in French farm country.
My soup, while delicious, was inedible.
I had cut the stem ends into half inch lengths, thinking it would be easier to purée.
My soup was filled with half inch fibers that felt like small fish bones.
Even after extensive time in the blender.
On the positive side, they were big enough that I could strain the soup using my jelly skimmer (very large holes) and catch them all without having to thin the soup to get it through a regular strainer.
straining sieving, the soup was both delicious and edible.
I suggest you use the good parts of the asparagus, as directed in the recipe.
Asparagus, Spinach and Leek Soup
Total time: 40 minutes
- 1 medium leek, trimmed, sliced, using light green and white
- 10oz (300gr) green asparagus, trimmed, cut into small pieces, tough ends discarded
- 2 cups (16oz, 480ml) chicken stock
- 1/2 tsp dry mustard
- 1/2 tsp za’atar
- 1/2 tsp lemon pepper
- 1 tsp marjoram
- 2 tbs celery leaf flakes
- 1 tbs olive oil
- 3oz (90gr) spinach, washed, trimmed if needed
- 1/2 cup (4oz, 120ml) milk optional
- In a large saucepan sauté leek in olive oil until tender.
- Add asparagus, stock and all remaining ingredients except spinach and milk.
- Bring to a boil, cover, reduce heat and simmer until asparagus is very done, about 20 minutes.
- Add spinach and cook until wilted, 2 – 3 minutes longer
- Purée in blender, using only as much stock as needed, reserving the rest.
- Add as much of the remaining stock and / or milk to get your preferred consistency.
- Return to heat and heat through – or chill and served cold.
- To serve: ladle into soup plates and add some fresh pepper.
For the record – I cooked my stem ends about twice as long.
I just had to take a photo of my eggs….
I know it’s very popular in the US to buy farm fresh, organic eggs from free range chickens.
These are the eggs I bought last week:
I got them at the supermarket, as I always do.
The carton says that the hens are free range.
I believe it…..
On our weekly walk we go by an ‘egg’ farm. There is a huge coop on one end of the field and the chickens are all running around like, well, chickens, all over the rest of the field.
There are hundreds of them, all brown of course (thus the brown eggs).
Twice a year he sells them all and spends a week (or so) cleaning and, we assume disinfecting and doing whatever to the coop.
Eggs aren’t washed before sale here like they are in the US – which is why they don’t need to be kept in the refrigerator.
One gets used to the occasional feather, bits of straw and, er, other stuff.
Farm life and all.
Which reminds me… I counted 10 calves in the herd across our little lake just now.