8 teaspoons granulated chicken or vegetable bouillon (or
8 cubes of bouillon)
1 bay leaf
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
fresh parsley, chopped or 1 tablespoon dried parsley
2 sprigs fresh thyme or
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 sprig fresh tarragon, chopped, or 1 teaspoon dried tarragon
1/4 cup fresh basil, minced, or 2 teaspoons dried basil
1 teaspoon seasoned salt
(or to taste)
1/2 teaspoon white pepper
1/4 cup cornstarch
2 cups half-and-half
Break off and discard the tough, thick end of each asparagus spear. Chop the
spears into 1/4-inch slices and add to the slow cooker along with all remaining
ingredients down to and including the white pepper.
Add water to within 1 inch of
the top of the slow cooker.
Cover the slow cooker and cook on HIGH for 6-7 hours.
About two hours before serving, use a slotted spoon to remove most of the vegetables
to a blender. Use a ladle to add some of the liquid from the slow cooker to the
blender. Puree the mixture and add back in to the slow cooker.
Repeat once or twice
more as necessary (you can leave some of the pieces in the slow cooker for effect.)
Add approximately 1 cup of the half-and-half to the slow cooker.
Add the cornstarch
to the remaining half-and-half in the carton.
Close the carton well and shake vigorously.
Add the mixture to the slow cooker.
Continue to cook on HIGH for 1 hour, stirring
Serve in bowls with a dollop of sour cream and chopped chives sprinkled over
the sour cream.