Today's recipe calls for a vegetarian asparagus, sweet onion and spinach soup, topped with optional sautéed sliced Portobello mushrooms seasoned with fresh tarragon.
2 cups thinly chopped sweet onion (like Vidalia or Texas sweet)
2-3 Tbs olive oil for sautéing onion
1 pound asparagus (see procedure below)
1 large clove garlic, minced
4 cups low sodium vegetable broth
6-9 ounce bag fresh spinach leaves
2-3 large Portobello mushrooms (see procedure below)
1-2 Tbs olive oil for sautéing sliced mushrooms
2 Tbs fresh chopped tarragon
salt and pepper for seasoning soup and mushrooms
truffle-infused olive oil for garnish (optional)
Add a splash of olive oil to a large heavy bottomed soup pot, on medium to medium high heat, and sauté about 2 cups of thinly sliced sweet onion to soften. (Use regular onions if you don't have sweet onions.)
While you're keeping your eye on that cut the lower, tougher 2 - 3 inches off of about one pound of asparagus (and discard those ends) and cut the remaining asparagus crosswise into very thin slices.
Once the onions have softened up, add the asparagus and 1 large finely minced clove of garlic and cook that to soften the asparagus.
Once the asparagus has softened up, add 4 cups low sodium vegetable broth, turn the heat to high and bring it up to a simmer. (Use low sodium or unsalted chicken broth for a non-vegetarian version.)
Next, use a spoon to scrape the inky gills off of 2 - 3 large Portobello mushrooms. Then, cut them in half; and then, cut each half crosswise into thin slices.
Sauté the sliced mushrooms in a large pan in a little olive oil to soften. Then, add 2 Tbs finely chopped fresh tarragon. Season to taste and turn the heat off.
Next, add one 9-ounce bag spinach leaves, a few handfuls at a time, to the pot of soup and let it wilt in and use a hand blender to puree it until it is nice and smooth.
Season to taste and serve with sautéed mushrooms and an optional drizzle of truffle-infused olive oil. (Truffle oil is available in the olive oil section of larger super markets. It's expensive but a little goes a long way.)