Nothing like a much-needed technology detox, a local luxury getaway away, and the first seasonal stars of Spring to put the “kitchen pep back into my blogging step”.
It starts with a beautiful view from my hotel suite. Honestly, how could I not be inspired? Cavallo Point, you’re one special place to visit.
A little bubbly on ice–oh, yeah…
A few artisanal chocolates–as if I hadn’t taken decadence to its limits on this trip already…
Two of my favorite people
And some seriously killer room service. It was all about being lazy. So room service was absolutely in order. And that’s when a creamy veloute of cauliflower crossed the threshold of our hotel room. So moved by this delicious french soup, when I returned home, I was determined to get my veloute on. After a quick stop at a few of my favorite shops; Wild Flour Bakery for some goat cheese fougasse bread and Oliver’s Market for some fresh seasonal asparagus — I found myself back where I love to be: cooking in my kitchen with local Sonoma County ingredients.
I sat down next to my favorite window and reflected on my beautiful stay, and of course what makes veloute so darn special? I’d say the luxurious thickening and enriching agents of cream, eggs and butter are pretty tough to beat.
My afternoon meal was paired with a fresh tart arugula salad from my garden, warm goat cheese fougasse bread from Wild Flour Bakery and a glass of Russian River Peche Merle Chardonnay. My personal reboot…now complete.
Veloute of Asparagus Soup
- 2 1/2-3 pounds fresh asparagus
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 4 tablespoons flour
- 2 cups warm water
- 4 cups chicken broth
- 3 egg yolks
- 3 tablespoons heavy cream
- 3 tablespoons white wine
- 3 tablespoons lemon juice
- freshly cracked pepper
- top with a dollop of tangy greek yogurt
In a large heavy-bottomed enameled pot make a roux by cooking the flour and butter together for about 1-1/2 minutes (not allowing it to color) over medium heat. Off heat, beat the warm water into the roux, using a wire whisk. Place on heat and cook for one minute then add the chicken broth and asparagus pieces and cook over low heat covered for 15-20 minutes. Puree the soup with an emulsion blender and if you want to get the soup super silky, run the puree through a food mill and place back in the pot and set over low heat.
Beat the egg yolks and cream together in a bowl. Heat these ingredients with a ladleful of hot veloute. Off heat, beat the egg and cream mixture into the veloute. Add salt, pepper, and an additional 2 tbsp. of butter, wine and lemon juice. Place back on the heat and reheat slowly. Adjust seasoning to taste.
Pour hot veloute into warmed bowls. Garnish with a dollop of tangy greek yogurt.
Add your favorite side salad and some toasty bread. Bon appetit!.