Asparagus Macchiato

Sadly asparagus season officially ends on June 24 here in Germany, so this is the last of my asparagus recipes for this season. I’ve stuck to my resolution of going to my filed & forgotten recipes lately, as planned.  Looking for a starter, I went through the soup section of my collection and found this Asparagus Macchiato, although to my defense I have to say I made this one before years ago and then filed and forgot about it.  I feel like I don’t even need to mention it anymore, but this one is also from Living at Home magazine.

This dish is easy and quick to prepare, but the milk needs to be prepared a day ahead to infuse in the fridge overnight. I think due to the spices used this could very well be served in autumn, too, so this year I have already frozen some asparagus to be prepared for any out of season cravings. The trick with freezing it is not to blanch it before freezing – which is what you get when you buy frozen asparagus – but to just peel and cut up the stalks.

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Asparagus Macchiato

1 tsp coriander seeds
½ lime
125 ml milk
750 g white asparagus
pinch of sugar
1 tsp butter
150 g cream
freshly ground pepper
freshly ground nutmeg
1 tsp pink peppercorns, crushed
espresso cups for serving

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Roughly pound the coriander seeds in a mortar.  Zest the lime.  Put coriander and lime zest into a tea strainer or a tea bag.  Heat the milk and add the tea strainer or bag.  Leave the milk to cool, then refrigerate overnight so it’ll be infused with the spices.

Peel the asparagus and cut off the ends.  Cut the stalks into pieces and cook in 700 ml salt water with a pinch of sugar and the butter for 20 minutes.  Purée the asparagus in the cooking liquid.  Stir in cream, and season with salt, pepper and nutmeg.

Warm your espresso cups.  Slowly heat the asparagus soup, but do not let it boil.

Remove the spice bag from the milk.  Heat the milk and foam it up with a milk frother.  Pour soup into the warmed cups or mugs, ladle frothy milk on top, and sprinkle with crushed pink peppercorns.

This soup is deliciously creamy and mild, and the scented milk froth on top both makes it a touch savoury and just perfects it.

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Note:  The original recipe says to serve this macchiato in espresso cups, and it would serve 12.  I served them in coffee cup (not mug) sized bowls, and that made 4 servings.