2-Tone Cream of Asparagus Soup

April 7, 2021 Updated: April 7, 2021

Whenever white asparagus appears in the market, I always grab a bunch to make this two-tone vichyssoise-esque soup. I make half the batch with green asparagus and the other half with white, then swirl the two together for an easy yet impressive presentation. This would be a perfect first course for an elegant dinner party.

I start by making a broth with the discards of the vegetables being used: the fibrous asparagus bottoms and leek tops. To give the broth more depth of flavor, add any herbs or other vegetables you have on hand, such as tarragon, parsley, carrots, and celery. Don’t use the potato peels, as they will cloud the broth.

This soup doesn’t really need any garnishes, as the whole point is to see how the two colors meld together in the cup. You can get really creative here—channel your inner barista!

As with all cold soups, the flavors dull when chilled, so it is a good idea to taste just before serving and adjust the seasonings.

Serves 6

  • 1 pound green asparagus, trimmed (about 1 inch from the bottom; reserve), and chopped into large pieces
  • 1 pound white asparagus, trimmed (about 1 inch from the bottom; reserve), and chopped into large pieces
  • 4 leeks, carefully washed and sliced, white parts only (reserve the pale green stems), divided
  • 10 cups water
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 20 peppercorns
  • 4 tablespoons butter, divided
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 2 medium Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and diced, divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt, divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon white pepper
  • 1 cup heavy cream, divided

Fill a large stockpot with 10 cups of water and place over medium heat. Add the bay leaf, peppercorns, trimmed asparagus stems, and pale green parts of the leeks. Bring to a boil, then simmer for about 20 minutes. Strain through a fine sieve and discard the solids. You will need 4 cups of broth per batch of soup—one green, one white. Set aside.

Epoch Times Photo
Save the trimmed vegetable bits to make your stock. (Victoria de la Maza)

In another stockpot, heat half the olive oil and half the butter over medium-high heat until foaming. Add half the leeks and sauté until soft. Add half the potatoes and all the green asparagus spears, and season with salt and pepper.

Add 4 cups of the reserved broth. Bring to a boil, and then reduce the heat to low and simmer until the potatoes and asparagus become tender, about 20 to 25 minutes.

Working in batches, purée the soup in a blender until silky and pass through a sieve. Stir in half the heavy cream. Chill in the refrigerator.

In a clean stock pot, heat the rest of the olive oil and butter over medium-high heat until foaming. Add the rest of the leeks and sauté until soft. Add the rest of the potatoes and all the white asparagus spears, and season with salt and white pepper.

Add 4 cups of the reserved broth. Bring to a boil, and then reduce the heat to low and simmer until the potatoes and asparagus become tender, about 20 to 25 minutes.

Working in batches, purée the soup in a blender until silky and pass through a sieve. Stir in the rest of the heavy cream. Chill in the refrigerator.

To serve, ladle 3/4 cup of each soup into a bowl or cup and swirl with a spoon or a knife to create a pattern.