Required: One and a half pounds of asparagus. One onion and leek. A bunch of parsley and herbs. Two ounces of butter. Two yolks of eggs. A little lemon-juice. Three pints of milk-and-water. Two level tablespoonfuls of ground rice. A pinch of castor sugar. Salt and pepper. (Sufficient for six.)

Overgrown asparagus, which is too tough to serve as a vegetable, will do excellently for this soup.

Cut off the tips of the asparagus, and put them aside. Wash and scrape the stalks, and cut them in pieces about an inch long. Peel and slice the onion. Wash the leek thoroughly and slice the white part.

Melt the butter in a saucepan, put in the vegetables, and fry them for a few minutes without colouring them, then add the herbs and milk-and-water, and let all simmer until the vegetables are tender. Take out the herbs and rub the rest through a hair sieve.

Rinse the saucepan out with a little water, pour back the soup, and re-boil it. Mix the ground rice smoothly with a little cold milk or water, pour it gradually into the soup, stirring it all the time until it has boiled for a few minutes. Let it then cool slightly, and add the beaten yolks of egg. Make the soup thoroughly hot, but be careful it does not boil after the yolks are added, or it will curdle. Season it with salt, pepper, a pinch of castor sugar, and a few drops of lemon-juice.

After cooking the asparagus tips in boiling salted water until tender, put them in a hot tureen, and pour the hot soup over them.

Cost. from 2s., more or less, according to season.