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Cream of Asparagus Soup

6 asparagus spears (fresh or frozen), cut into pieces
3/4 c. water
1 packet instant chicken broth & seasoning mix
1/4 bay leaf
Dash each pepper & ground thyme
2 tsp. reduced calorie margarine
2 1/4 tsp. all purpose flour
1/2 c. evaporated skimmed milk (at room temperature)

If using fresh asparagus, trim away woody ends. In small saucepan combine asparagus, water, broth mix and seasonings; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and let simmer until asparagus are tender, 5 to 8 minutes; remove from heat and let cool. Remove and discard bay leaf; transfer asparagus and cooking liquid to work bowl of food processor or blender container and process until pureed; set aside. In same saucepan (which as been wiped clean) heat margarine over low heat until bubbly and hot; add flour and stir to combine. Using wire whisk, gradually stir in milk and cook, stirring constantly, until mixture is smooth and thickened; stir in asparagus puree and heat (do not boil). Makes 1 serving, about 1 cup.

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