Even though the temperatures are still well below zero, I'm starting to crave spring greens in a big way - asparagus season just cannot get here soon enough as far as I'm concerned!
While it's going to be a while yet before I'm biting into a satisfyingly crunchy stalk of sauteed asparagus, I decided a green soup would be in order since it would both fulfill my craving for more greens *and* help keep me warm.
This simple soup is extremely quick and easy to make, and has a pleasant, mild flavour that even the kids should love (if you can convince them to try a spoonful of very green liquid!)
Serving Lemon Oregano French Toast on the side should help win over any reluctant family members. This was my first foray into a more savoury French toast and now I can't believe I never tried it before - it's wonderfully fragrant as it cooks up!
2 tbsp butter
1 onion, chopped
1 head mild leaf lettuce (such as Bibb or Boston), thoroughly washed and coarsely chopped
2 cups chicken or vegetable stock
2 cups frozen peas
¼ cup light cream
1 tsp salt
½ tsp pepper
3 tbsp milk
juice of ½ a lemon
1 tsp dried oregano (or use 1 tbsp minced fresh oregano if you have some on hand)
a pinch of salt
6 thick slices of bread
1-2 tbsp butter for frying
- In a large saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Add onion and cook until tender. Add lettuce and cook just until wilted.
- Add stock and peas and simmer over medium heat for about 10 minutes.
- Blend in small batches in blender until smooth (*carefully* as hot liquid has a tendency to spurt!)
- Return to saucepan and add cream, salt and pepper. Heat over medium-low heat until hot.
- In a wide, shallow bowl combine the eggs, milk, lemon juice, oregano and salt.
- Heat a cast iron or non-stick pan over medium heat; add about ½ tablespoon of butter and swirl it around to coat the pan as it melts.
- Cut each slice of bread into 3 "fingers"; dip each bread finger into egg mixture, turning to coat both sides evenly (don't dip more at one time than you can fit in your pan!).
- Cook bread fingers for about 2 minutes per side until golden brown; if slices are thick enough turn them on their sides to cook briefly as well. Add more butter to pan as needed to prevent sticking when cooking subsequent batches of French toast sticks.
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