Chilled Asparagus Vichyssoise Recipe

This smooth velouté is a rich, creamy soup usually made with a combo of potatoes and sweet sautéed leeks. It's a sophisticated French soup that tastes great. And it's deceptively simple to master thanks to this recipe from recipe developer Sher Castellano.

Vichyssoise, she explains, "is traditionally a soup served cold," which means this verdant version made with seasonal spring asparagus is the perfect appetizer to wake up your palate on the first warm days of the season. The asparagus is added only for the last five minutes of cooking, which means that it retains its bright color and infuses the soup with its nutty aroma.

Served simply with a slice of crusty French bread and a dusting of freshly minced chives, this asparagus vichyssoise a delightful way to make any meal feel like a special occasion. Give it a try with this simple recipe, and serve it the next time you have guests over.

Gather the ingredients for this asparagus vichyssoise

To make this asparagus vichyssoise, you will begin with sweet leeks, which will form the aromatic base of the soup. Leeks are an allium — a member of the onion family — but they are milder than their cousins and therefore won't outshine the delicate flavor of the asparagus. Cooked in butter and deglazed with a bit of apple cider vinegar, the leeks are joined by potatoes, vegetable broth, and, of course, asparagus. Seasoned with fine sea salt and black pepper and garnished with a second allium — chives — this soup is ready to be enjoyed.

Cook the leeks for the asparagus vichyssoise

To make this asparagus vichyssoise, you'll begin with the leeks — and before you start cooking, you'll want to wash them. Leeks' layers have a tendency to trap sand and grit, which are far from sought-after ingredients for this silky smooth soup!

To wash the leeks, first split them lengthwise into quarters, and then rinse well between each leaf. Lop off the dark green part, reserving only the white and light green, and slice them thinly.

At this point, the leeks are ready to be cooked. Heat a large soup pot over medium heat, and then add in the butter and leeks. Sauté for 5 minutes, then deglaze with the apple cider vinegar, which, Castellano notes, "brings brightness to the dish." Stir with a wooden spoon to bring up the fond — the browned, caramelized bits on the bottom of the pot — that will add even more flavor to the finished soup.

Add the other ingredients to the asparagus vichyssoise

Once the base is cooked, it's time to add the other ingredients to this asparagus vichyssoise.

The potato, broth, salt, and pepper join the party first. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for five minutes, or until the potatoes are tender. This step ensures that the potatoes are creamy and soft in the finished dish but that the asparagus retains its bright color.

Speaking of which, it's time to add this asparagus vichyssoise's headliner: the asparagus! First, trim the woody ends, which Castellano notes could be astringent or bitter. Cut the asparagus into one-inch pieces and add them to the pot, cooking for five minutes more, or until tender.

Blend the asparagus vichyssoise

When both the potatoes and asparagus are tender, it's time to blend the cream into the asparagus vichyssoise. Before adding the cream to the pot, first remove it from the heat. This, Castellano notes, will "keep the cream flavor rich." With the cream added, simply blend the soup in small batches until smooth.

To get the smoothest texture possible, there's one more step: passing the blended soup through a fine mesh sieve, which will remove any fibrous bits of asparagus that remain. Discard any pulp, and the resulting soup will be rich and silky smooth.

Chill the asparagus vichyssoise

Before serving the asparagus vichyssoise, there's one more essential step: chilling it. Transfer the soup to a bowl and refrigerate for two hours. Since salt is less perceptible on the palate when food is cold, before serving, you may want to give the soup a taste and season with a pinch more.

Portion the soup and drizzle with a touch of cream. Garnish with fresh chives and black pepper, and enjoy the soup on its own or with crusty French bread to scoop every last drop from the bottom of your bowl!

Chilled Asparagus Vichyssoise Recipe
5 from 44 ratings
This smooth velouté is a rich, creamy soup usually made with a combo of potatoes and sweet sautéed leeks. It's a sophisticated French soup that tastes great.
Prep Time
10
minutes
Cook Time
20
minutes
Servings
4
servings
asparagus vichyssoise
Total time: 30 minutes
Ingredients
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 cup leeks, thinly sliced
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 medium Yukon gold potato, diced small
  • 2 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
  • ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 pound asparagus, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • ¼ cup heavy cream
Optional Ingredients
  • Minced chives, for garnish
Directions
  1. Heat a large soup pot over medium heat, then add the butter and leeks. Sauté for 5 minutes. Add the apple cider vinegar, and stir to scrape the browned bits from the bottom of the pot.
  2. Add the potato, broth, salt, and pepper, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer, and cook uncovered for 5 minutes (or until the potatoes are tender). Add the asparagus and cook for 5 minutes more (or until the asparagus is tender).
  3. Remove the pot from the heat and add the cream.
  4. Blend in small batches until smooth. Then, to ensure a silky smooth texture, run the blended soup through a fine mesh sieve and discard any pulp.
  5. Transfer the soup to a bowl and chill for 2 hours. Taste and add more salt if desired.
  6. Serve chilled with a drizzle of cream, chives, and a twist of black pepper.
Nutrition
Calories per Serving 146
Total Fat 8.7 g
Saturated Fat 5.3 g
Trans Fat 0.1 g
Cholesterol 28.0 mg
Total Carbohydrates 15.3 g
Dietary Fiber 3.8 g
Total Sugars 3.8 g
Sodium 324.0 mg
Protein 4.0 g
The information shown is Edamam’s estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.
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