Here's a quick & easy, uncomplicated soup I like to make when there's lots of good, fresh, inexpensive asparagus around. More like a cross between a soup & a risotto, really. If you like Parmesan you'll like it! I really like it!
ASPARAGUS SOUP WITH RICE & PARMESAN:
(serves 4 - 6)
* 500g asparagus, woody ends removed & stalks peeled, if necessary
* salt & freshly ground black pepper
* 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
* 1 large garlic clove, finely chopped
* 3 tablespoons chopped continental (flat) parsley
* Half cup Aborio rice
* 60g freshly grated Parmesan cheese, plus extra for the table.
- Bring 6 cups of water to the boil, add salt & plunge the asparagus stalks into the boiling water.
- When crisp-tender (about 5 minutes) lift asparagus out with tongs & cut into 5 cm pieces. Retain cooking liquid.
- In another large pot, combine the oil, garlic & parsley & cook over a low heat till the garlic softens (about 3 minutes), stirring constantly.
- Add the reserved asparagus cooking liquid & bring to boil.
- Add the rice & cook till al dente (about 11 mintes)
- Add the asparagus pieces & heat through.
- Remove from heat & stir in the Parmesan & check the seasoning.
- Serve right away (or the rice will keep absorbing the water & become mushy) with extra Parmesan at the table.