Some days just call for soup.
If you've ever tried taking the subway in New York City on a Saturday morning, specifically if you're attempting to get from Manhattan to Brooklyn, then you know what I mean.
The 4/5 isn't running at all, which would normally be your direct route to what is quickly becoming your most frequented outer borough (since The.Boy. lives there). The C/E is running on the F line, but only from some random stop in Queens to another random stop in Brooklyn, which is weird because the E doesn't even GO to Brooklyn, so it stops running on the F line at W 4th street in Manhattan. And all of a sudden you're in some random subway station in the middle of the city, completely lost even though you've navigated the subway system for over a decade of your life, and some lady on the loudspeaker is telling you that if you want to go to Brooklyn, then you need to go backwards in order to go forwards.
Did I mention that you're already late? Awesome.
Not to mention that only crazy people ride the subways on Saturday mornings. ("Case in point," The.Boy. said, looking pointedly at me when I told him this. According to him, all the sane people are still sleeping. To which I replied, "Sleep? PSHHH. I don't do that.")
But seriously, I spotted at least three different kind of psychoses and four different personality disorders. And I'm sure that if I remembered anything at all from my med school days, those numbers would have increased. Ten-fold.
Eventually, my cookies did make it to NYC's National Food Blogger Bake Sale (to which you can still donate/purchase raffle tickets for a chance to win some awesome prizes!) and I did make it to The.Boy.'s apartment where I exercised my girlfriendly right to distract him from studying for his finals/regrouped enough to be able to even fathom embarking on another Saturday subway adventure.
But you can see why a big bowl of hot steaming comfort was necessary, right? Especially when that comfort involve pureed white beans and potatoes, parmesan cheese, and roasted asparagus. It's the kind of soup that's not life-changing or mountain-moving. But just good. In a reliable kind of way. And after a morning of absurd Saturday subway antics...reliable really is just what you need.
This soup is what's on this week's menu for The Food Matters Project! To check out other interpretations or to see the original recipe (I changed it slightly, omitting the wine and adding in half a head of cauliflower) click here!
Roasted Asparagus and White Bean Soup
Serves 4-5, adapted from The Food Matters Cookbook
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 bunch asparagus, about 1 1/2 lb, ends removed
- 2 leeks, thinly sliced
- 1 tbsp minced garlic
- 1 tbsp finely chopped fresh rosemary
- 2 baking potatoes, peeled and chopped
- 1/2 head cauliflower, chopped
- 1 cup dried white beans, soaked overnight and boiled until tender
- 6 cups vegetable broth, water, or bean cooking liquid (or any combination of the three)
- 2 oz grated parmesan cheese
- salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- Preheat oven to 450. Arrange asparagus on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Drizzle with 1 tbsp olive oil and sprinkle with salt. Roast for 10-15 minutes or until tender. Set aside.
- In the meantime, heat 1 tbsp olive oil in large pot over medium-high heat. Add the leeks and saute until tender, 3-5 minutes, stirring frequently. Add in the garlic and rosemary and cook for 1 minute, or until fragrant.
- Stir the potatoes, cauliflower, cooked white beans and vegetable broth in to the pot. Turn the heat up to high and bring to a boil, then lower it to a simmer, just so that the mixture remains bubbling even when partially covered. Let simmer for 20-30 minutes or until vegetables are cooked through.
- Puree soup with an immersion blender. Stir in the parmesan cheese.
- Chop the asparagus and add it to the soup.
- Season to taste with salt and black pepper.