Spring Soup with Bread Dumplings

Spring Soup with Bread Dumplings
Staff Writer

Thinkstock/iStockphoto

First things first: This is a spring soup. It’s meant to be made when asparagus and fava beans are in season. Just because you can find these items in the supermarket in November, when they have been flown in from the other half of the world, doesn’t mean you should give them a second thought. Eat this soup when our half of the planet is awakening from its long winter nap and you’ll feel renewed, too. 

Click here to see more spring soup recipes. 

Ingredients

For the dumplings

  • large eggs
  • 2  Cups  fresh white breadcrumbs
  • 1 1/3  Cup  Parmigiano-Reggiano
  • 2  Tablespoons  chopped parsley

For the soup

  • 1/2  Pound  shelled fresh fava beans
  • leeks
  • 2  Tablespoons  unsalted butter
  • 4  Cups  chicken stock
  • 1/2  Pound  asparagus
  • 1/2  Pound  small white mushrooms
  • 2  Ounces  Parmigiano-Reggiano
  • 1  Cup  shelled fresh or thawed frozen green peas

Directions

For the dumplings

Beat the eggs in a medium bowl until frothy. Stir in the breadcrumbs,  Parmigiano-Reggiano, and parsley leaves. Roll into 12 balls and set aside. 

For the soup

If using fava beans, bring 1 quart salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the shelled fava beans and blanch for 1 minute; immediately transfer them with a slotted spoon to a bowl of ice and water to cool. When they are cool enough to handle, gently peel the skin from the beans.

Trim off and discard the green parts of the leeks, leaving about 5 inches. Cut the white parts in 1/2 lengthwise and then into 1-inch pieces (about 3 ½ cups); rinse them well and pat them dry.

Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Reduce the heat to medium-low; add the leeks and cook for 5 minutes, or until they have softened.

Meanwhile, bring the chicken stock to a boil in a 4-quart saucepan. Trim the asparagus. Peel the bottom 1/2 of the stems if the stems are thicker than 1/3 inch; slice the asparagus crosswise into 1-inch pieces (about 11/3 cups). Clean, trim, and quarter the mushrooms (about 2 2/3 cups). Add the asparagus and mushrooms to the leeks and cook for 2 to 3 minutes more, or until almost tender. Microplane-grate the cheese (about 11/3 cups) or grate on the fine side of a box grater (about 2/3 cup).

Add the leek mixture to the chicken stock along with the favas and peas. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to low; add the dumplings and cook for 8-10 minutes, until they are cooked through. Stir in the cheese and serve. 

Nutritional Facts

Total Fat
19g
27%
Sugar
7g
8%
Saturated Fat
5g
21%
Cholesterol
75mg
25%
Carbohydrate, by difference
32g
25%
Protein
33g
72%
Vitamin A, RAE
55µg
8%
Vitamin C, total ascorbic acid
7mg
9%
Vitamin K (phylloquinone)
15µg
17%
Calcium, Ca
80mg
8%
Choline, total
53mg
12%
Copper, Cu
1mg
0%
Fiber, total dietary
7g
28%
Folate, total
72µg
18%
Iron, Fe
4mg
22%
Magnesium, Mg
60mg
19%
Niacin
8mg
57%
Pantothenic acid
1mg
20%
Phosphorus, P
240mg
34%
Riboflavin
1mg
91%
Selenium, Se
17µg
31%
Sodium, Na
1822mg
100%
Water
367g
14%
Zinc, Zn
2mg
25%

Soup Shopping Tip

Buy fresh herbs and spices to season your soup; fresh garlic, parsley, and thyme will enhance the flavor without being overpowering.

Soup Cooking Tip

Most soups are better the day after their made. If possible refrigerate your soup overnight before serving.

Soup Wine Pairing

Chenin blanc with cream soups; pinot noir, gamay, grenache, or other light red wines with tomato-based soups, including tomato-based seafood soups; sercial or bual madeira or fino or manzanilla sherry with consommé or black bean soup; amontillado with black bean soup.