Fresh Asparagus Soup Can Provide Essential Prebiotics
Asparagus and other similar vegetables are known as “prebiotics,” or foods that encourage the development of a healthy microbiome (bacteria colony) in the body. Asparagus soup, a classic creamy soup, is most often bladder friendly despite that “funny smell” the urine develops temporarily after consuming asparagus.
- 1 ½ pounds fresh asparagus, rinsed
- 4 cups MSG free chicken broth (Swanson’s)
- Bowl of ice water
- 2 T. unsalted butter or olive oil
- ½ cup minced leek whites (usually well tolerated by people with interstitial cystitis)
- 1 tsp. minced garlic
- ¼ tsp. salt
- Dash or two white pepper (if tolerated)
- ½ cup heavy cream or evaporated milk
- Grated Parmesan cheese (optional garnish)
Cut tips from the asparagus, about 1 to 1 ½ inches in length and set aside. Cut off woody ends of stalks at about 1 ½ inches, also setting aside separately. Cut the remaining stalks into ½ inch pieces. Bring stock to a boil in medium stock pot. Add the woody end stems, simmering for 20 minutes to infuse with asparagus flavor. Use slotted spoon to remove and discard woody stems.
Blanch asparagus tips for 1 minute in steaming broth, using a slotted spoon, remove to bowl of ice water to stop cooking. Remove from ice water to paper towel. Set aside broth.
In another medium stockpot, melt the butter or heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Add leek whites, cooking about 3 minutes until tender. Add garlic, cooking for additional minute. Add the tender chopped asparagus stalks, salt, and pepper. Continue to stir and cook for additional 2 minutes. Add the broth from first pot and simmer until the asparagus is tender, about 20 minutes. Remove from the heat.
Puree soup using blender, immersion blender, or food processor. Return to stock pot and add cream and half of the blanched asparagus tips, warming soup for about 2 more minutes. Serve in large soup bowl. Garnish with a few of the remaining asparagus tips and Parmesan cheese. Enjoy!