My Paleo Pal this month is Maggie, who blogs at m=1. She sent me a bunch of beautiful asparagus. This month I sent her leeks. Check out what she did with them!
Generally, I simply blanch asparagus quickly for 5 minutes then run them under cold water and serve cold. But since it is cold outside I thought I would do something different, so I roasted them and made them into a delicious, nourishing soup. The soup came out much better than I expected!
Asparagus is loaded with nutrients. It is a very good source of fiber, folate, vitamins A, C, E and K, as well as chromium, a trace mineral that enhances the ability of insulin to transport glucose from the bloodstream into cells. It is also rich in glutathione, a nutrient critical in the detoxification pathways. This is why eating asparagus may help protect against and fight certain forms of cancer, such as bone, breast, colon, larynx and lung cancers.
Asparagus has many anti-oxidants which help neutralize cell damaging free radicals. It also delivers folate, which works with vitamin B12—found in animal products—to help prevent cognitive impairment.
Additionally, asparagus contains contains high levels of the amino acid asparagine, which serves as a natural diuretic. This is helpful for people who suffer from edema (an accumulation of fluids in the body’s tissues) and those who have high blood pressure or other cardio-vascular diseases. You remember when you have eaten asparagus, as there is the distinctive odor in the urine.
Pairing asparagus with nutrient dense chicken broth serves up a fantastically rich and nourishing dish.
Roasted Asparagus Soup
- 1 quart chicken broth (how to make)
- 1 bunch fresh asparagus (1 – 1 1/2 pounds) — reserve a few tips for garnish
- 1 large yellow onion, skinned and cut into chunks
- 4 stalks scallion cut into 1 inch pieces
- 4 clove garlic left in the shell
- 1 tablespoon olive oil (where to buy)
- 1 tablespoon coconut aminos (where to buy)
- 1/2 cup coconut milk (where to buy) (optional)
- Sea salt, granulated garlic and pepper to taste (where to buy)
- 2 Cookie sheets with sides lined with parchment paper
- 3 -4 quart pot
- Immersion blender (where to buy)
- Heat the oven to 400 degrees F
- Clean the asparagus and break off the ends
- Place the asparagus and scallions on the cookie sheet and coat with the olive oil and the coconut aminos by rolling them around
- Place the onion chunks and garlic on the other cookie sheet coat with oil
- Sprinkle all vegetables with salt, granulated garlic and pepper
- Start roasting the onions and garlic first for about 15 minutes or until slightly browned
- Place the asparagus and scallions to roast for about 5 – 8 minutes depending on the thickness of the asparagus, turning once or twice
- Remove from oven and let cool a bit
- Remove the shell from the garlic, squeeze out the paste and place in the pot
- Place all the vegetables in the pot with chicken broth and heat to a simmer
- Place the immersion blender in the pot and blend until it is all pureed (I do this in the sink to avoid any splattering)
- Season with more sea salt and pepper to taste
- Add the coconut milk if you are doing so (this will give a strong coconut flavor)
- Garnish with asparagus tips and serve!