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Leek, Asparagus & Herb Soup
“Like a bouquet of fresh vegetables, this light but soothing soup is just the thing on a cool spring evening. It is important to cut the green vegetables into small pieces so they cook quickly, while retaining their bright color.”
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
2 medium leeks, trimmed, washed and finely chopped (1½ cups)
2 cloves garlic, minced
½ pound new potatoes, scrubbed and diced (about 1⅔ cups)
2 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth, or vegetable broth
1 pound fresh asparagus, trimmed and cut into ½-inch pieces (1½-2 cups)
⅔ cup snow peas, or sugar snap peas, stemmed and cut into ½-inch dice
3 tablespoons chopped fresh chives, divided
2 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1 tablespoon chopped fresh dill
2 teaspoons chopped fresh chervil, (see Ingredient note) or flat-leaf parsley, plus sprigs for garnish
2 cups 1% milk
1 tablespoon lemon juice
¼ teaspoon salt, or to taste
Freshly ground pepper, to taste
⅓ cup low-fat plain yogurt, for garnish
1Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium-low heat. Add leeks and cook, stirring often, until softened but not browned, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook, stirring, for 1 minute.
2Add potatoes and broth; bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Cover and reduce heat to medium-low. Simmer, stirring occasionally, until the potatoes are tender, 10 to 15 minutes.
3Increase heat to medium-high and stir in asparagus and peas; simmer, covered, stirring 2 or 3 times, until just tender, 3 to 4 minutes. Remove from heat; stir in 1 tablespoon chives, parsley, dill and chopped chervil (or parsley). Transfer the soup to a blender and blend until smooth. (Use caution when pureeing hot liquids.)
4Return the soup to the pan. Add milk and bring to just below a simmer, stirring, over medium heat. Stir in lemon juice, salt and pepper. Ladle into soup bowls. Garnish each serving with a dollop of yogurt, a sprinkling of the remaining chopped chives and a sprig of chervil (or parsley).
Make Ahead Tip: Prepare through step 3. Cover and refrigerate for up to 8 hours.
Ingredient Note: Chervil (from the Greek for “herb of rejoicing”) has a mild flavor between those of parsley and anise. It doesn't dry well, so is best used fresh.