With just spinach, this simple vegan chilled asparagus soup is spring in a bowl. The ingredients are minimal to keep the focus on the asparagus.
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium white onion, thinly sliced
1–1/2 pounds asparagus, trimmed and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt plus more for serving
1/4 teaspoon black pepper plus more for serving
2 cups vegetable stock
4 ounces fresh baby spinach
Minced chives and fresh parsley for serving
Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Sauté the onions until they are completely soft and translucent, about 8-10 minutes. Add the asparagus, salt and pepper and continue cooking until the stalks turn bright green, about 4-5 minutes. (Reserve about 1/4 cup asparagus to garnish the soup.
Increase the heat and add the stock. Once the stock is boiling, reduce the heat and simmer until the asparagus is tender, about 8-10 minutes. Then add the spinach stirring until it has wilted, about 2 minutes. Allow the soup to slightly cool.
In batches, transfer the soup to a blender to puree. Strain the soup in a fine mesh sieve. Cool to room temperature and then chill in the refrigerator before serving.
Top each bowl with the reserved asparagus, salt, pepper, chives and parsley.
Adapted from Bon Appetit April 2012