Asparagus Veloute with Smoked Tomato Oil


This is a deliciously velvety soup which would be great in the spring. When you cannot get fresh asparagus please DON’T be tempted to use the tinned variety, its stringy and bitter and really not good. The term veloute is used quite often in restaurants to simply make the menu look “FANCIER!” The actual term is for a soup finished with a ‘liaison’ which is a mixture of cream and egg yolks. However for the home cook, if the method below scares you simply replace the egg yolks with 100ml of cream.


 

Ingredients – Makes Approximately 1 litre


70g Butter

750g Asparagus, roughly chopped

1 Litre of stock (chicken or vegetable)

1 White onion, peeled and roughly chopped

2 Garlic cloves

100g Leek, roughly chopped

100g Celery, roughly chopped

1 Litre of stock (chicken or vegetable)

2 Egg yolks

100ml Cream

5 small vine (or 1 fairly large) Tomatoes

100ml Olive oil

 

Method


  1. 1. In a pot on medium heat melt the butter and then add all the ingredients from asparagus to celery.
  2. 2. Keep cooking until the vegetables are softened but without colour.
  3. 4. Add the stock and reduce by a quarter.
  4. 5.Blend and pass through a sieve until it is smooth.
  5. 6.Reheat again just below a boil.
  6. 7.Meanwhile whisk the yolks and cream together, add to the soup and DO NOT REBOIL.
  7. (N.B if you reboil the soup will be grainy and the eggs will scramble)
  8. 8.The soup is now ready to serve. Dot the soup with some of the tomato oil (see below) and optional garnish like chopped herbs or Parmesan.
  9. 9.If you are not using it straight away it can be reheated at a later time it just needs to never be re-boiled.

 

Tomato oil


  1. 1.Smoke the tomatoes until they soften slightly in a smoker (this is not essential just gives an alternative flavour profile, an alternative is to use a little paprika)
  2. 2.Blend with the oil
  3. 3.Put into a sauce bottle for later