---------- Recipe via Meal-Master (tm) v8.02
  
       Title: ASPARAGUS SOUP #2
  Categories: Vegetables, Microwave, Soups/stews
       Yield: 6 servings
  
   1 1/2 lb Fresh asparagus washed and
            -tough/dry ends removed
     1/4 c  (1/2 stick) unsalted
            -butter
       1 c  Carefully washed and chop
            -leeks white part only
     1/2 c  Chopped onion
     1/2 c  Chopped celery
       1 sm Baking potato (about 1/2
            -lb) peeled and cubed
   3 1/2 c  Chicken stock
       1 ts Lemon juice
            Salt and pepper to taste
            Paprika, optional
     1/2 c  Half-and-half
            Creme fraiche/whipped cream
            -for garnish
  
      Snap off asparagus tips and set the stalks aside. Melt butter in a deep
   skillet with a cover. Add asparagus tips, onion, leeks, celery and potato.
   Cover lightly and cook over the very lowest heat until vegetables are soft,
   20 minutes or more.
      Meanwhile, place chicken stock in a large saucepan with the reserved
   asparagus stalks, cut into large pieces. Bring to a boil and simmer,
   covered tightly, for about 30 minutes. Discard stalks and set stock aside.
      In a food processor, puree softened vegetables and add to the asparagus
   stock. Season with lemon juice, salt, white pepper and paprika, if desired.
   Allow to cool and refrigerate. Stir in half-and-half and serve garnished
   with a dollop of creme fraiche or whipped cream and a sprinkling of
   paprika, if desired.
  
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