Spring has leapt into Summer. “It’s the most glorious time, of the year!” Though by all counts, this time around, so far, summer is pretty darn hot.
I sure was charmed by these sweet pea blossoms and new pods way back in May:
You may remember, I was so very happy to secure a plot in one of my town’s community gardens earlier this year. And there was so much growing when I arrived to prepare the soil, I thought the plot was double-booked! I found out that it was mine, with a grand inheritance from last season’s previous gardener. Arugula, endive, red oak leaf lettuce, radishes, dill, fennel, cilantro,
I was so grateful, but still needed to weed out some of the prolific arugula, endive and cilantro to have room for all my other garden plans.
And so, with some of this lovely surplus, I decided to create a new soup. There is nothing to not love here, I promise you!
You get to have the heady fragrance of balsamic and olive oil marinated endive and asparagus billow about you as it’s grilling, rocking your senses with joy.
You get the sweet bursts of peas. The rich melding together of herbs and cream. It’s just one of many perfect ways to say, “I love my garden.”
Cream of Grilled Endive and Asparagus Soup with Fresh Peas and Blue Cheese
- 4 packed cups curly endive, washed and patted dry
- 10-12 spears fresh asparagus, washed and trimmed
- a few tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- a few tablespoons olive oil
- salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
Preheat stove-top or outdoor grill. Place vegetables in a large mixing bowl or baking pan, drizzle with vinegar and oil, salt and pepper, then toss to thoroughly coat. Quickly grill vegetables, leaving a few minutes before turning with tongs, so there is a nice bit of char on at least some of the pieces, and both asparagus and endive are limp and cooked through. Remove from grill and set aside. Chop asparagus – perhaps leaving a few spears to garnish your soup bowls, if you like.
- 3/4 c. diced onion
- 2 cloves (or to taste) minced garlic
- 1-2 tbsp. olive oi
- 1 large potato, small dice
- 3 c. chicken (or vegetable) stock
- 1 c. half and half, heavy cream, or coconut milk
- 2 tsp. fresh thyme leaves
- 2-3 tbsp. fresh minced dill
- additional salt and freshly ground pepper
In large soup pot, heat oil then add diced onion and garlic and saute over medium high heat, stirring frequently until beginning to brown. Add diced potatoes and saute a few minutes more, then pour in 1/2 of your stock. (Feel free to add a bit more stock to cover vegetables, if necessary.) Bring to a boil and cook until potato is tender. Puree this mixture in a food processor, blender, or Vitamix. Return to pot. Next, puree endive and asparagus, then add to pot along with rest of stock, stirring to blend with potato mixture. Turn heat to medium low. Add cream, peas, herbs and any additional salt and pepper to taste.
When soup is heated through and simmering nicely, ladle into bowls and finish with crumbled blue cheese. Serve steaming hot – or simply warm – with a smile.