This Asparagus and Leek Soup is the kind of dish my body is telling me it needs right now. Fresh, healthy, cleansing and full of vitamins. My mind might be saying "sugar!"--but my body is definitely clamoring for the green stuff this week. This is an easy soup that just requires some chopping and simmering and doesn't contain any dairy or fat.
It comes from The Beauty Detox Foods, the new book by Kimberly Snyder, C.N., about the best 50 foods to eat for health and beauty from the inside out. A fan of Snyder's first book, The Beauty Detox Solution, I had to buy this one which contains 85 recipes and the properties of the different foods. I am not quite ready to commit to the full on detox plan yet, but adding some of these healthy recipes into my week certainly doesn't hurt. ;-)
Snyder says, "This soup is popular with my clients who love that it has such a creamy, thick consistency without the use of any cream or milk at all. This soup is a lifesaver in the middle of the day or afternoon as it is filling, comforting,100 percent veggie, and totally beautifying."
Asparagus and Leek Soup
Beauty Detox Foods by Kimberly Snyder, C.N.
(Yield: About 7 Cups)
1 Tbsp + 3 1/2 cups low-sodium vegetable broth, divided
3 small or 2 medium garlic cloves, minced
1 1/2 cups chopped yellow onions
3 cups chopped leeks, both white and green parts
1 cup chopped celery
1 bunch asparagus, tough ends trimmed & cut into 1-inch pieces
(I added 1 Tbsp chopped fresh dill)
high quality sea salt, to taste
freshly ground black pepper, to taste
(I added about 1 1/2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice)
chopped fresh parsley as a garnish (I used asparagus tips, cut in half & fresh dill)
Heat 1 tablespoon broth in a large cooking pot over medium heat ans saute the garlic, onions and leeks. Add the celery and asparagus and cook for about 3-4 minutes, stirring constantly.
Add the rest of the vegetable broth and bring to a boil, then immediately reduce heat, partially cover and allow to simmer for about 25-30 minutes. Stir occasionally.
Let the soup cool, transfer to a blender and blend in batches until it's the desired smoothness. I like to leave a slightly chunky texture.
Add the soup back to the pot, and bring to a simmer. Adjust seasonings to taste.
Spoon into bowls, garnish with fresh parsley and serve.
Notes/Results: Thick and satisfying--this soup tastes like spring and it doesn't taste at like it has no fat, oil or dairy in it. I was able to use local leeks, onions and asparagus and I made two small changes--adding the juice of 1/2 lemon and some fresh dill, both of which I thought would enhance the flavor of the soup. Since the flavors are fairly straightforward and mild, the dill and lemon add a little extra brightness and you can keep the salt lower. For texture, I left it a bit chunky--pulsing half in the blender, pureeing the other half--I think for this soup, that slightly brothy texture works well. (Of course, if you are detoxing--don't partner it with pumpernickel bread spread with local goat cheese and dill--but otherwise it makes a nice pairing for a light supper.) This soup is a nice lighter change of pace and I liked it both hot and cold--I will make it again.
A soup and two salads await in the Souper Sundays kitchen, let's take a look.
Janet of The Taste Space offers up Holy Shiitake Lentil Soup, culled from her freezer and says, "I love unearthing gems from the freezer. I should do it more often. I
often get wooed by fresh produce but I need to remind myself to keep
things stress-free by eating from the freezer. This is a soup I have
made a few times, too, and was lucky to have garden kale when I made
this in the fall. I have used both shiitakes and oyster mushrooms with
great results. Combining mushrooms and lentils, the earthy flavours mix
well with the tangy vinegar and zippy garlic. It is during these dreary
days that warm, comforting bowls of my favourite soups really help."
Joyce of Kitchen Flavors makes her first appearance at Souper Sundays this week with her variation of Yotam Ottolenghi's Apple and Cheddar Salad and says, "...it turned out to be one lovely salad. I
especially love the dressing. I have used extra-virgin olive oil since I
do not have sunflower oil, and it works out great. And I have added in
an extra teaspoon of honey and a little bit more of the cider vinegar.
Love the crispy, juicy, sweet apples and the combination of cheddar
cheese with crispy honey roasted sunflowers seeds along with the fresh
green coral. Both my daughter and myself really enjoyed this plate of salad. We had a big plate each!" Welcome Joyce!
Mireille of Chef Mireille's Global Creations shares this savory Thai Papaya Fish Salad and says, "I've been on a seafood kick this month, so I added some seasoned fried
fish and fresh greens and you have a delightful dinner salad. Spicy, salty, sweet....this salad has all of the multi-layered flavors
we all expect from Thai food. However, this light salad is half the
calories of a rich coconut milk curry. If you love Thai food but not
the calories, this is the perfect salad for you!"
Thanks to Janet, Joyce and Mireille for joining in this week. If you have a soup, salad or sandwich to share, just click on the Souper Sundays logo on the side bar for all of the details.
Have a happy, healthy week!