Hearty Spring Green Soup
Welcome the fresh green goodness of spring with this unique soup that’s filled with asparagus, broccoli, green onions and leeks. Make it low-fat by using vegetable broth and just a smidgen of milk instead of heavy cream. Lemon juice and cumin add brightness and depth. Asparagus and broccoli help maintain eye health with their carotenoid antioxidants. Leeks and green onions provide antioxidant sulfides that support the immune system plus heart and digestive health. One serving provides 45 percent of your daily value for vitamin A and more than 100 percent of your recommended daily intake of vitamin C!
Makes about 11 cups (8 servings, 1 1/3 cup each)
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
3-4 very large leeks, white and light green parts, sliced thin (about 2 cups slices)
1 cup chopped celery
4 green onions, thinly sliced
6 cups lower-sodium vegetable broth, divided
1 pound Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces
1 pound asparagus, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces
1 pound to 20 ounces fresh broccoli florets, chopped into 1-inch pieces
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/2 cup whole milk
3 tablespoons lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon each ground cumin and garlic powder
Sour cream, crushed red pepper and chopped chives (optional garnishes)
1. Heat olive oil in a large 5-quart Dutch oven or stockpot over medium-high heat.
2. Add leeks, celery and green onion. Cook for about 10 minutes, until leeks begin to soften.
3. Add 4 cups of vegetable broth along with potatoes. Bring to a boil, lower heat to medium and cook until potatoes begin to soften (about 10-15 minutes). Stir frequently.
4. Add asparagus, broccoli and remaining 2 cups of vegetable broth. Add a small amount of water if necessary so liquid covers all ingredients. Cover with lid and cook for 8-10 minutes or until vegetables slightly soften. Stir occasionally.
5. Stir in the salt, pepper, milk, lemon juice, cumin and garlic powder; heat for an additional minute or two.
6. In a large blender, food processor or immersion blender, puree the soup in batches until it is smooth or reaches the desired consistency.
7. Serve with a dollop of sour cream, crushed red pepper and chopped chives as a garnish.
Nutrition information (per serving)
5 g protein
23 g carbohydrate
4 g fat
0.5 g saturated fat
1.5 mg cholesterol
508 mg sodium
549 mg potassium
92 mg calcium
2.6 mg iron
2227 IU vitamin A
69 mg vitamin C
3 g fiber
Kim Galeaz is a registered dietitian, the owner of Galeaz Food & Nutrition Communications in Indianapolis, and a frequent contributor to Live Right Live Well >. As a culinary-nutrition consultant and spokeswoman, Galeaz is passionate about blending great taste with good health in all of her culinary creations.