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Asparagus Morel Soup

1 small onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, chopped
2 1/2 tbsp. olive oil
2 lbs. asparagus, cut into 1/2 inch lengths
6 cups chicken stock
1 cup dried morel mushrooms
2 cups hot water
2 large shallots, sliced
Salt and Pepper to taste

In a large saucepan combine the onion, garlic and 2 tbsp. of oil and cook over moderately
high heat, stirring, until ingredients are softened, about 5 minutes.  Add the asparagus and
cook for 5 minutes, stirring.  Add the chicken stock and bring to a boil.  Reduce the heat to
low and cook until asparagus are very tender, about 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 350.  In a bowl, soak the morels in hot water until softened, about 20
minutes. Make sure no grit remains and chop the morels.
In a pie plate, toss the morels, shallots and the remaining oil and a little salt and pepper.
Bake for about 15 minutes.
Working in batches, puree the soup in a blender.  Return the soup to the saucepan and
season with salt and pepper.  Ladle into bowls and garnish with the morels and shallots.


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