There have been days this spring where I think to myself that if I read another article about the bounty of the spring rhubarb and asparagus crops, the “harbingers of spring” as so many have written, I think I might start banging my head against a wall. Yes, rhubarb and asparagus are in full force in spring, and yes in the cold and short growing season in Chicago there’s not much else to talk about, but come on. Let’s talk about sweet butter lettuce and snap peas. Or sprouts and spinach! What’s going on with those crops? Why must it always be rhubarb and asparagus? I need another veggie to catapult me out of this spring rut.
And then I remember that rhubarb and asparagus are so delicate and tasty, and their seasons so short and fleeting, and I realize why so many authors and writers have devoted columns, blogs and newsletters to these vegetables. And then I read this article in the Chicago Tribune about a fresh spring asparagus soup, and I was forced to bite my tongue.
The recipe is simple, but as the article describes, it has a wonderful velvety texture. The bright green color is really pretty, too. I garnished it with a little sour cream as suggested, along with some sliced green onions. What I loved most about this soup is its bright, sparkling flavor (which is enhanced with the right amount of salt and definitely the lemon juice). Sweet, fresh flavor like this, in my experience, is really only possible to attain when using the first, most delicate spring vegetables. Like asparagus. I think I will shut up and eat my soup.