09 June 2010

Asparagus - 2 ways

Asparagus are so ubiquitous at the grocery, standing tall amid all the slumpy bagged lettuces, carrotts and radishes, it's easy to forget they have a season and are a quintessential heralding of spring.  At the very least, during their time to shine I figured it would be best to give them some minimalist preparation that lets the asparagus-ness shine through. 

The first comes courtesy of my old standby, Food and Wine.  Over the years I've subscribed to every current and deceased food magazine in publication.  Good ole F&W never seems to disappoint.  Even when they come out with the dull standard Summer BBQ edition (not everyone has a grill people, or back yards for that matter!), they still seem to keep the creativity going in both the simple and time consuming. The shaved asparagus from Mario Batali's slimmer side-kick Mark (the tall guy from Iron Chef) is a nice recipe for both my raw and gluten free friends.   
Shaved Asparagus Salad adapted from Food and Wine
Serves 2
A dozen chunky Asparagus, washed and trimmed and woody end removed
Parmesan cheese, finely grated like sawdust -- 3-4 tablespoons or to your liking
Juice of 1 Lemon 
1-2 tbsp olive oil

Place juice of lemons and cheese in small bowl, add salt and pepper and olive oil, mix to form a loose paste.  With a vegetable peeler, shave long, thin sheaths from the asparagus.  Place in a large bowl and toss with lemon-cheese dressing.  
Our second offering comes from one far more obsessive about seasonality than I could ever wish to be, and while I can't help but finding both him and his name annoyingly pretentious, I'll admit the guys got some game when it comes to making the most out of a singular theme.  Jello anyone?  
Asparagus with Egg and Chorizo adapted from Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall's Guardian column
Serves 1

1/2 dozen Asparagus, of any size
1 Egg
Small piece of Chorizo, 1-2 inches depending on your love of pork
dollop of olive oil

Place a pot of water on stove to boil. 
Cut Chorizo into tiny bite size pieces or crumble.  Saute in a large fry pan with a bit of oil.  Meanwhile, steam or roast asparagus until just barely cooked.  Add asparagus to pan with Chorizo and toss to mix flavors.  

In boiling water, poach egg till just done but runny at the yolk.  

Place asparagus and chorizo on a plate and top with egg.  This makes a great dinner with some crusty or toasty bread.  

1 comment :

  1. Love asparagus! I will try to make the Asparagus salad soon. You can find some lovely, tender asparagus in Ireland at the moment.
    Thanks for this inspiring recipe ...plus shave the asparagus with the peeler great idea!! Asparagus pretentious name? Of course...any adaptation of a Latin word sounds a little pompous.
    Thank you


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