Cheesy Cream of Asparagus Soup
2 packages (12 ounces each) frozen cut asparagus
1/4 cup butter
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
4 cups whole milk
1 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese
4 to 5 drops hot pepper sauce
1-1/2 teaspoons salt
3/4 to 1 teaspoon pepper
Roasted asparagus tips, optional
Prepare asparagus according to package directions; drain and set aside.
In a large saucepan, melt butter.
Stir in flour until smooth; gradually add milk.
Bring to a boil; cook and stir until thickened, about 2 minutes. Cool slightly.
Pour half the milk mixture into a blender; add half the asparagus.
Cover and process until very smooth; return soup to the saucepan.
Repeat with the remaining milk mixture and asparagus.
Stir in the cheese, hot pepper sauce, salt and pepper; heat through (do not boil).
If desired, top with roasted asparagus tips.
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