Spinach and Parsley Soup with Lemon
- SERVINGS: 10
To preserve the fresh flavor of this creamy-but-light soup, add the crème fraîche just before serving.
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 medium onion, coarsely chopped
- 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon honey
- 5 1/2 cups chicken stock or 3 1/3 cups canned low-sodium broth plus 2 cups water
- 2 pounds fresh spinach, tough stems discarded and leaves rinsed
- 1 cup tightly packed fresh flat leaf parsley leaves, plus 2 tablespoons finely chopped parsley
- 2 cups cème fraîche or sour cream
- 2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
- Salt and freshly ground pepper
- Julienned lemon zest, for garnish
- Melt the butter in a large nonreactive saucepan. Add the onion and cook over moderately high heat, stirring, until softened and lightly browned, about 6 minutes. Add the honey and cook, stirring for 1 minute. Add the chicken stock, raise the heat to high and boil for 5 minutes. Stir in the spinach and the whole parsley leaves. Bring to a boil and cook until the spinach is tender but still bright green, about 3 minutes. Working in batches, puree the soup in a blender until smooth. Return the soup to the saucepan.
- Stir in 1 1/2 cups of the crème fraîche and gently reheat; don't let the soup boil. Stir in the lemon juice and season with salt and pepper. Ladle into shallow soup plates, add a dollop of crème fraîche and garnish with the chopped parsley and julienned lemon zest; serve at once.
Pair with a Californian Chardonnay with crisp, nonmalolactic acidity, which will contrast with the richness of the soup and bring out the tanginess of the crème fraîche and lemon.