My VitaMix is making me a lazy cook.
When I have extra produce that I need to use up, do I scour the internet (aka “my favorite cookbook”) for a novel way to cook it? No, I just toss it into my turbo-charged blender and process it until it’s as creamy as, well, cream, as frothy as sea foam. I throw in a few herbs, a complementary spice or grating of pepper, and it’s cheating, really—gourmet cooking without the cooking. The crazy machine will even heat it up for me if I’m too lazy to get out a pot.
So even though a few of you have written asking me to post more Vita-Mix recipes, I hesitate, first, because I know that not everyone has one of these blenders-on-steroids and, second, because it’d be just too easy to work my way through the vegetable kingdom, blending up everything from celeriac to potatoes to zucchini and filling this blog with nothing but Vita-Mix recipes. And you wouldn’t want that.
But let’s say you did. We could start with the letter A and one of my favorite vegetables, asparagus. We could make it a bit special by roasting the asparagus along with garlic and onions to bring out their natural sweetness before blending with just enough raw cashews to add some extra body and creaminess. And we could preserve the fresh flavor of the asparagus by treating it simply, not overwhelming it with competing flavors, adding a sprinkle of lemon peel to brighten and highlight its earthy green taste.
Don’t worry. I’m not going to let the Vita-Mix take over this blog, though with summer vegetables on their way, it’s certainly tempting. Actually, you don’t even need a high-powered blender to make this delicious vegan asparagus soup. Try it in any ordinary blender, and if it doesn’t get as smooth as silk, strain it through a fine sieve to remove any excess fiber.
You don’t want a Vita-Mix anyway; it’ll just make you lazy.
Roasted Asparagus Soup
- 2 pounds asparagus ends trimmed
- 2 cloves garlic peeled
- 1/2 small onion sliced
- 2 cups warm vegetable broth or “no-chicken” broth
- 1/2 ounce raw cashews (1 heaping tablespoon) or 1 tablespoon cashew butter
- 1/8 teaspoon white pepper
- salt to taste
- grated peel of 1/2 lemon or orange
- Preheat oven to 450F. Place the asparagus spears on a baking sheet lined with a silicone liner or parchment paper. Roast for 10 minutes. Turn asparagus and sprinkle the onion and garlic over it. Roast for about 10 more minutes, until asparagus is very tender. If anything looks like it’s browning too much, take it out. (Important Note: These directions are for thicker asparagus. Thin asparagus may take much less time so start with 6 minutes, turn and add onions and garlic, and check again in 5.)
- While the asparagus is roasting, blend 1/2 cup of the broth with the cashews and pepper until smooth. Leave it in the blender.
- When the asparagus is done, select several of the best-looking spears, remove the tops, and set aside to use as garnish. Cut the remaining asparagus into pieces and put it and the onion and garlic into the blender, along with the remaining broth. Cover the blender and blend on high until perfectly smooth.
- If you’re using a Vita-Mix, you can blend it on high for a few more minutes until piping hot (remove the center cup and cover with a kitchen towel to allow steam to escape). Otherwise, pour the soup into a saucepan and heat until hot, stirring frequently. Add salt, if needed, to taste.
- Pour into bowls and sprinkle with grated lemon or orange peel. Garnish each bowl with the reserved asparagus spears and serve hot.
Nutritional info is approximate.
Additional Appetizing Asparagus Recipes:
Blanched Asparagus with Almonds, Shallots & Lemon from Not Eating Out in New York
Asparagus Quinoa Sushi with a Lemon-Ginger Dipping Sauce from Vegan Eats
Asparagus Tapenade from A Veggie Venture
Asparagus Pesto Pasta Salad (from yours truly)
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