This green version of classic vichyssoise is enriched with yoghurt rather than cream. Traditionally served chilled, the soup can also be served hot, so it is ideal for days when the weather is changeable.
1 tablespoon sunflower oil
200g peeled and diced potato
1 leek, white part only, coarsely chopped
300g fresh asparagus, trimmed and chopped
250g sugar snap peas, chopped
1.25 litres salt-reduced chicken stock
1 tablespoon finely snipped fresh chives or chopped fresh chervil
½ cup natural low-fat yoghurt
white pepper to taste
snipped fresh chives or sprigs of fresh chervil to garnish
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Heat the oil in a large saucepan. Add the potato and leek and stir well. Cover and cook over a low heat, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes or until the leek has softened but not browned.
Stir in the asparagus and sugar snap peas, then pour in enough of the stock to cover the vegetables. Bring to the boil, then cover and reduce the heat. Simmer gently for 5–7 minutes or until the vegetables are tender.
Cool for a few minutes, then purée the vegetables with their cooking liquid in a blender or food processor. Pour into a bowl. Stir in the remaining stock, the chives or chervil and half of the yoghurt. Season to taste with white pepper. Leave to cool completely, then refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
Taste and add more white pepper, if necessary. Ladle the soup into bowls and garnish with a spoonful of the remaining yoghurt, chives or chervil and serve.
Some more ideas…
Chilled cucumber soup: Replace the sugar snap peas and asparagus with 1 cucumber, chopped, and the chives or chervil with 1 tbsp very finely chopped fresh mint. Cucumber contains a lot of water, so use only 600ml of stock. Garnish with shreds of fresh mint. *The soup freezes well, but do not add the yogurt before freezing: stir in the yogurt when the soup is thawed but still chilled, then season, garnish and serve.
Asparagus is an excellent source of folate as well as providing vitamins C and E and betacarotene. Asparagus has a mild laxative effect.