Creamy asparagus velouté with ham and balsamic vinegar
The good thing about this balmy and simple velouté is that with asparagus, potatoes and ham, you can make a full dinner of it. My children loved its delicate taste and tender colour, with Adele falling completely for the crunchy asparagus slices. The balsamic vinegar adds a nicely sweet and elegant touch we all enjoyed. I made smiley faces for the kids - that was enough to win them over. For a vegetarian option, replace the ham with a poached egg.

Creamy asparagus velouté with ham and balsamic vinegar

Posted on May 12, 2010
Categories: All vegetarian recipes, Main Courses, Soups, Starter, vegetarian
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Recipe by: Adapted from recipe by Stephane Reynaud in 365 Bonnes Raisons de Passer a Table (2009)
Busy:30 min, Total prep time: 30 min
Serves: 6 
Gently sauté the onions in the hot olive oil in a large pan with tall sides.

Bring about 1.5 liter water to the boil in a kettle.

Peel, wash and halve the potatoes. Slice each half into 2 mm slices (thin slices cook faster) and toss into the pan with the onions. Pour the boiling water over them and simmer, uncovered and bubbling gently, for 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, chop and discard 1 inch off the root ends of the asparagus. Peel the bottom half of each stalk and chop coarsely. Keep 6 tips (cut to 6-7 cm length) on the side for garnish. This should have taken you halfway into the potato simmering time, toss the asparagus into the soup and simmer 10 more minutes.

Meanwhile, tear the ham into coarse strips and slice the asparagus tips finely, leaving the ends whole. Mix the asparagus, ham and parmesan into a salad and set aside.

Season the soup with salt and pepper and whiz thoroughly with a hand blender. Stir the cream into the soup and cook for a couple more minutes. Adjust the seasoning and serve into soup bowls with a drizzle of balsamic vinegar and some asparagus, parmesan and ham salad prettily arranged at the centre of each bowl.

Gently sauté the onions in the hot olive oil in a large pan with tall sides.

Bring about 1.5 liter water to the boil in a kettle.

Peel, wash and halve the potatoes. Slice each half into 2 mm slices (thin slices cook faster) and toss into the pan with the onions. Pour the boiling water over them and simmer, uncovered and bubbling gently, for 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, chop and discard 1 inch off the root ends of the asparagus. Peel the bottom half of each stalk and chop coarsely. Keep 6 tips (cut to 6-7 cm length) on the side for garnish. This should have taken you halfway into the potato simmering time, toss the asparagus into the soup and simmer 10 more minutes.

Meanwhile, tear the ham into coarse strips and slice the asparagus tips finely, leaving the ends whole. Mix the asparagus, ham and parmesan into a salad and set aside.

Season the soup with salt and pepper and whiz thoroughly with a hand blender. Stir the cream into the soup and cook for a couple more minutes. Adjust the seasoning and serve into soup bowls with a drizzle of balsamic vinegar and some asparagus, parmesan and ham salad prettily arranged at the centre of each bowl.

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Rating: 4.5/5 (2 votes cast)
Creamy asparagus velouté with ham and balsamic vinegar, 4.5 out of 5 based on 2 ratings
This soup makes a fair quantity, freeze the leftovers to use for lazy evenings. It will keep for a month.
Ingredients

2 tablespoons olive oil
2 onions, peeled, halved and sliced
3 medium sized potatoes (avoid new potatoes here)
2 asparagus bunches
30 cl single cream
6 slices or shavings of cured ham
60 g parmesan shavings
Balsamic vinegar
Salt and pepper

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