Introduce your family to vegetables the French way, by starting with a pureed soup featuring the new veggie.
- 2 Tbs. or butter
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 1 small leek, white parts only, sliced in half moons
- 1 small potato, peeled and diced
- 1/4–1/2 tsp.
- 1 c. water
- 1–2 c. homemade chicken stock
- 1/2–1 Tbs. fat (bacon grease, lard, tallow, butter)
- about 3/4 lb. fresh asparagus or zucchini
- 1/2–1 tsp. dried dill weed
- to serve: butter, Parmesan cheese, optional sour cream
- Over medium heat, saute the onion and leek in oil/butter for 3-5 minutes until softening. Add the potato cubes and salt and cook and stir a few minutes more.
- Pour in the stock and water (or use all stock or vegetable broth) and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook, covered, for 10-20 minutes until potatoes are soft. Smaller pieces will cook faster if you’re under a time crunch.
- Meanwhile, prepare the asparagus. Wash it well, remove the ends by snapping them off, then cut the stalks into 1-inch pieces. Optionally, save the tips for a pretty garnish or silly faces. In a separate skillet, saute the asparagus until crisp tender in the additional fat (or cook slightly longer if necessary for blending).
- (If using zucchini, add cubes at this time.)
- When the potatoes are soft and you’re ready to serve the soup, add the asparagus and dill to the soup base. Puree, either with a hand blender (this is difficult if the asparagus is only crisp tender) or in a full-sized blender. Just be careful with the hot liquid either way.
- Serve to children with little pats of butter making a happy face and grate Parmesan cheese and/or use a dash of dried dill for the hair and beard.
- It’s a beautiful green soup with a light flavor, perfect for a first course when the children are very hungry.
The base of this soup can be made ahead then finished when ready to serve to maintain a bright green color. Leave the dill and asparagus out and cook and add them when it’s serving time.
If you’d like to save a pan, you can cook the asparagus right in the soup, but don’t add it until the last few minutes. You know me and dishes – I wouldn’t tell you to use a separate pan if it wouldn’t make things taste better. I think boiled asparagus loses a lot of the charm of the vegetable.
* Inspired by this recipe.