For the soup
- 2 tablespoons good, salted butter
- 10 ramps or 10 garlic cloves
- 1 medium yellow onion, diced
- 2 pounds fresh asparagus
- 4 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
- 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- A few good grinds black pepper
- 1 tablespoon safflower oil (or other high-heat cooking oil)
- 1 package halloumi cheese (about 8 ounces)
- 12 grape or cherry tomatoes
- To make the soup:
- Melt the butter in a medium pot over medium heat. Trim roots from ramps and discard. Cut ramps to separate green leaves from stems. Add ramp stems and diced onion to pot and cook, stirring occasionally, until onion begins to soften, just a few minutes. (Alternatively, roughly chop garlic and add to pot with onion.) Trim woody ends from asparagus and discard, then chop asparagus into 1-inch pieces. Add asparagus to pot along with ramp leaves, broth, and salt. Bring to a boil over high heat, then cover and reduce heat to maintain a gentle simmer until asparagus is tender, 5 to 10 minutes.
- Off the heat, stir in cream, lemon juice, and pepper. Use an immersion blender or transfer soup to a blender (in batches if necessary) and process until perfectly smooth.
- To garnish (optional):
- The soup is great by itself, but this substantial garnish makes it extra pretty and turns it into a more filling meal. Warm the safflower oil in a 10-inch nonstick pan over medium-high heat. Dice the halloumi, add to pan and cook until browned on a few sides, about 5 minutes. Slice tomatoes in half lengthwise. Pour soup into serving bowls and top with a few pieces of halloumi, some tomatoes and a small handful of microgreens.