Who doesn’t need to use up some of the leftover ham from Easter? I swear the weather this weekend also helped dictate what I ended up making. It has been rainy, raw and just plain chilly, kind of like a fall day. It also helps that one of my favorite soups is creamy ham and asparagus. It is so satisfying, it is simple to make and warms you from the inside out. I also make this when I have leftover asparagus; I guess pretty much any excuse works for me.
I do know many people who are not soup people, I don’t get that at all, and I kind of feel bad for them? Maybe they have never had a good tasting soup? Maybe when they were little soup was their meatloaf & peas (two of my childhood nightmares) I do like peas now but I still refuse to eat meatloaf. I love meatballs but no loaf. It’s a mental thing I know. That must be it! On the other spectrum I have had a few people come up to me at work while I was re-heating my yummy soup for lunch and really want to make homemade soups but have had terrible luck so have given up; which is really sad. I have had a soup class and hope to again – I will help and or convert as many as will let me.
Passing it on – My son was looking around the kitchen to see if we had any canned soups. I convinced him that he could make a delicious tomato soup, fairly easily and would taste a million times better than anything he could get from a can. I got out all the ingredients and while sitting at the island working; I guided him through the process. He wanted to make the soup all on his own, that’s my boy!
If you have some things to use up in the fridge and a little time I believe soup is a great way to feed yourself and your family.
Creamy Ham & Asparagus
1 ½ Cup fresh asparagus
2-3 carrot, julienned
2-3 tablespoons butter
2-3 small white or 1 large onion, diced
2-3 cloves of garlic, minced
2-3 tablespoons butter (equal to your butter)
2 cups milk
2 cups chicken broth
1 cup fully cooked ham, cut into bite size pieces
Salt and Pepper to taste
Grated Parmesan cheese, optional
Trim asparagus and place in a saucepan, cover with water and cook till just crisp-tender. Drain and set aside
In a heavy saucepan, sauté carrots in butter for 3-5 minutes; add onions and garlic and sauté a couple of minutes longer or until tender.
Stir in flour; gradually add milk. Bring to a boil; boil and stir for 2 minutes, add broth, ham and reserved asparagus.
Reduce heat and simmer. Add salt and pepper to taste. Garnish with freshly grated parmesan cheese.
Slight variation – You can also add a couple of potatoes if you wanted a little heartier soup, you could also add your favorite herb to change it up a bit. If you add raw potato, cut them up small and simmer long enough to cook them probably 20-30 minutes. Increase the chicken stock for a lighter soup or a little more milk. if you wanted a really creamy soup, substitue 1 cup of half and half for 1 of the cups of milk – BUT do not boil the soup once you add the half and half. You can let it simmer to heat through but do not let it boil.