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Chilled Asparagus and Leek Soup with Truffle Whipped Marscapone Cream

    •  In recognition of the longest day of the year, Mother Nature decided to turn up the thermostat here in Virginia on the first day of summer, and she hasn’t looked back. I wish I could call it a heatwave(which would mean at some point that wave would crest and return to normal), but heat and humidity go hand in hand when you are talking about summertime in the south, so with the warm weather here to stay, it looks like it is time to crank up the a/c and make some chilled soup…and just in time for this month’s 5 Star Makeover Event:

 Hosted by Lazaro Cooks! and 5 Star Foodie


  • I think chilled soups are a really nice addition to summer menus; offering a refreshing break from the day’s heat, and  the chance to showcase summer flavors with a different approach to presentation.
  • Another bonus is that the soup will be made ahead and chilled, which means it is ready for a quick bite on the go, or may be added to a complete menu.
  • For this soup, asparagus is quickly roasted to warm up the flavor, then whirled together with sauteed leeks & chicken broth to create the base. Buttermilk and lemon juice brighten the soup, and add a bit of tang. You could stop here and enjoy it just the way it is, but I like to garnish with something like crispy prosciutto or in this case,  truffle whipped marscapone cheese. Either way, this soup will cool you off, and keep you looking pretty good in your bikini!
  • Chilled Asparagus and Leek Soup with Truffle Whipped Marscapone Cream
  • 1 pound  asparagus, trimmed
  • Salt and white pepper
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 leek (white and light green part only), thinly sliced
  • 1 1/4 cups chicken stock
  • 1 cup buttermilk


For the garnish:

  • 8 ounces mascarpone cheese
  • 1/4 cup whipping cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon truffle oil
  • Salt and white pepper, to taste
  • 4 teaspoons chopped fresh chives

Preheat an oven to 350 degrees.

Toss the asparagus with salt, pepper, two tablespoons olive oil, and one tablespoon lemon juice. Place them on a baking sheet and roast in the oven for five minutes, or until the asparagus are tender  and still bright green.

Sauté the leek in remaining olive oil over medium heat for four to five minutes, or until tender. Put the asparagus, leek, and chicken stock in a blender, working in batches if necessary, and purée the vegetables. Pour into a large bowl and add the buttermilk and remaining lemon juice. Combine well. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Chill for at least one hour. The soup may be made and refrigerated for up to one day in advance.

Whisk the cheese and cream. Fold in the truffle oil. Season with salt and pepper. Put a dollop on top of each serving of soup. Sprinkle with fresh chives.

4-6 servings


Ciao Fiore! Virtual Italian Cucina

Ciao Fiore Restaurant
Un Ristorante Alfresco Virtuale

***Press Release

Scheduled opening May 28, 2012 of Ciao Fiore! An enchanting outdoor ristorante on the Mediterranean Coast featuring alfresco dining in an ambrosial flower garden. Chefs Norma from Platanos, Mangoes & Me!, Debi from Table Talk, and Lori Lynn from Taste With The Eyes will meet in the virtual Italian cucina to create a captivating five-star three-course meal enhanced with edible flowers and herbs dal giardino. Reservations are not required.

Ciao Fiore Ristorante
Ciao Fiore!

Ciao Fiore! is a Virtual Restaurant
participating in
The 5 Star Makeover Cooking Group “Restaurant Wars” Competition


Top Ten in ’10: Table Talk’s Popular Posts

I know there have been a lot of year end recaps and New Year’s favorites out there in blog land over the last few weeks. You are probably about sick of them, as I sneak this one in before it’s too late…

But it would be hard for me to move forward into our brand new year without a little refelction and a look at a few of your Table Talk favorites (or at least these are the ones you said were your favorites).

I’m looking forward to a brand new year of blogging  with all of you around what brings us together at our  tables, and what connects on our blogs as friends.

Cheers everyone~ Wishing you an amazing 2011!


Roasted Beet, Fennel, and Caramelized Pecan Salad

Pan Seared Scallops with Meyer Lemon Dust and Chipotle Beurre Blanc

Asparagus, Shiitake Mushroom, and Sun Dried Tomato Tart with Fresh Herbs

Ramps: A Little History & a Pesto Recipe with Goat Cheese

Shaved Asparagus and Edamame Salad with Truffle Oil Vinaigrette

Chilled Artichoke Soup

Artisan Burger Tasting Dinner Party

Slow Roasted Fennel Porchetta