Farmer’s markets are up and running. Two of the best items to pick up now are rhubarb and asparagus. Chef Jessica Tijerina is in the TCL kitchen with two recipes.
Chilled Asparagus Soup with Cajun Cream
2 lb. fresh asparagus, trimmed of woody ends
2 cloves garlic, peeled
2 white onion, peeled and quartered
1 c. fresh mint leaves
1-pint low sodium vegetable broth
1 teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon white pepper
1 c. heavy cream
1 lemon, cut in half
1 cup sour cream
1 teaspoon Cajun spice blend (Tijerina Global Spices Acadian Cajun Spice Blend)
- Boil a large pot of salted water. (Approximately 16 cups water and 1/8 cup salt.
- Add the asparagus garlic and onion and cook until tender (approximately three minutes).
- Remove the vegetables from the boiling water and transfer them to an ice and water bath.
- Drain the water and set the bowl of vegetables aside.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the sour cream and Cajun seasoning. Add salt if desired. Set aside.
- Put the asparagus, garlic and onion in a blender or food processor. You may want to rough chop them first for a quicker blend. Add mint and broth and purée until smooth.
- Season the purée with the salt and white pepper. With the blender/food processor still engaged, slowly add the cream until well incorporated. Chill until ready to serve.
- Divide soup into serving bowls. Drizzle the Cajun sour cream over the top. Garnish with mint and lemon juice.
2 tablespoons butter
2 cups rhubarb, diced
1 ¼ cup milk (2% or whole, not low fat or you will yield a watery result)
2/3 cup sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla or almond extract
½ teaspoon salt
¾ cup white unbleached flour
1 teaspoon lemon zest
Confectioner’s sugar for final dusting (powdered sugar)
Preheat oven to 375°F
- Butter a cast iron skillet or 9-inch baking dish.
- Add the rhubarb to the skillet or baking dish.
- In a medium bowl whisk milk, sugar, eggs, and extract.
- Slowly whisk in salt and flour until batter is smooth. Add zest and whisk a few more times to incorporate.
- Pour batter into the skillet and place in the oven and bake for 45 minutes-1-hour until a skewer comes out clean and the crust is a golden brown. Run a knife around the edges if needed.
- Dust lightly with confectioners’ sugar and serve. May be eaten warm or cold.