Cream of Asparagus Soup

1/2 cup chopped onions
1/2 cup chopped celery
1 (10 1/2-ounce) can chicken broth, defatted
1/4 cup white rice
1 pound asparagus spears
2 cups evaporated skim milk
1/2 cup fat-free sour cream

Lightly spray an unheated large saucepan with no-stick spray. Add the onions and celery. Cook and stir over medium heat until the onions are tender. Stir in the broth and rice. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat. Cover and simmer about 20 minutes or until the rice is tender. Meanwhile, in a large saucepan with a tight-fitting lid, bring 1 inch of water to a boil. Place the asparagus in a steamer basket and set the basket in the saucepan, making sure the basket sits above the water. Cover the saucepan and steam for 10 to 15 minutes or until tender. Cut the tips from the asparagus and set aside. Chop the spears. Add the spears and 1/2 cup of the milk to the rice mixture. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 5 minutes. Transfer the asparagus-rice mixture to a blender or food processor. Blend or process until smooth. While the blender or food processor is still running, slowly pour in the remaining 1 1/2 cups of milk. The final consistency should be smooth and slightly thickened. Return the mixture to the saucepan. Heat the soup to a simmer. Remove from the heat and stir in the sour cream. Garnish each serving with the reserved asparagus tips. If desired, drizzle with additional fat-free sour cream slightly thinned with water.

Makes 5 side-dish servings.

Calories 135; Fat 1


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