Apr 22, 2010

Wine Country Recipe: Asparagus & Snow Pea Soup

With asparagus and snow peas in season, this recipe from Schug Carneros Estate is the perfect way to welcome spring. It was created by Chef Kristine Schug, who worked at sparkling wine producer Domaine Carneros and restaurants in Napa and Sonoma before becoming Winery Chef of Schug Carneros Estate. You can find other recipes by Chef Schug here. Enjoy!

Asparagus & Snow Pea Soup
with Lemon-Tarragon Cream

4 tbsp. butter
2 large onions, peeled, quartered and sliced
½ cup very thinly sliced celery
1/2 tsp. salt
2 qt. stock (vegetable or chicken)
1 lb. Snow peas, trimmed, strings removed
1 lb. asparagus, trimmed, cut in 1-inch lengths, tips set aside
freshly ground black pepper
Lemon-Tarragon Cream (see below)

Note: This recipe serves 10 but is easily divided in half.

Blanch asparagus tips in salted boiling water until tender. Rinse in cold water to stop cooking; set aside. In a large soup pot over medium heat melt the butter, then add the onions, the celery and the salt. Gently sauté until the onions and celery are limp. Add the stock and bring mixture to a boil. Simmer for approximately 20 minutes or until the onions and celery are completely cooked through.

Now add the asparagus (except for the tips). One minute later add the snow peas. Simmer for approximately 7 or 8 minutes or until peas and asparagus are tender but still bright green. Quickly puree all the soup and strain out vegetable fibers. Return strained soup to pot and reheat but do not boil or the pretty bright green color will be lost.

Correct for seasonings and ladle hot soup into warm serving bowls. Garnish with an asparagus tip or two and a tablespoon of Lemon-Tarragon Cream. Serve immediately.

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