Tuesday, June 3, 2014

So Much Asparagus

So you bought a ton of asparagus, now what?
Asparagus season is a great time of year.  Partly because asparagus is the first real vegetable of spring, but also because it’s just such a tasty vegetable.  If you’re anything like me you might find yourself buying it multiple times in a week while it’s in season because of the fear that it will soon be gone.  However, if you just end up cooking it and throwing a little butter on it every night you might be missing out on some other delicious opportunities.  And what if you don’t save any of it for later in the year?  You don’t want to end up eating asparagus from Chile… or maybe you do, but I don’t.  So be sure to freeze some of it

Have it with eggs
One of our family’s favourite things to do with asparagus is making it the main course of our meal by pairing it up with some eggs.  A fancy way to do this is to make an asparagus and mushroom quiche.  A simpler variation of the quiche is to make a frittata.  But the simplest method is to cook up some asparagus then top it with some fried eggs!  It’s easy, it’s tasty, and makes a grain light main dish.

Asparagus with Fried Eggs and Parmesan
Serves 4
·        ½ - 1 lb asparagus, washed (and ends snapped off if tough)
·        4-6 eggs
·        1-2 tbsp. butter (or olive oil)
·        salt and pepper
·        grated parmesan cheese

Heat a pan over medium heat with about a half inch of water in it.  Add the asparagus, cover and cook for about 5 minutes.  Pour off the water, add the butter (or a bit of olive oil), a dash of salt and pepper and fry for a couple minutes, then remove from heat.
While the asparagus is cooking fry up the eggs without breaking the yolks.  Cover the eggs to help them cook since you won’t be flipping them.
Serve the asparagus topped with the eggs and sprinkle with the grated parmesan cheese (or other hard cheese) and a bit more freshly ground pepper.  Accompany the meal with some nice crusty bread and a simple Caesar salad, it’s like eating spring!

Simple Spring Greens Caesar Salad
·        Assorted spring greens (lettuce, spinach, chard, beet greens, dandelion greens, pea shoots, etc.)
·        ¼ cup olive oil (or local oil)
·        2 tbsp. cider vinegar
·        2 tbsp. mayonnaise
·        1 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
·        1-2 cloves garlic, minced (or 1 tsp. garlic powder)
·        salt and pepper
·        grated parmesan cheese
Rinse and dry the greens, then chop them coarsely.  Make the dressing by adding all the ingredients to a small jar and shaking. Toss the greens and dressing, top with parmesan and serve.
Tons of Asparagus Variation: If you have so much asparagus you don’t know what to do with it cook up a bit more by blanching it (cook it in boiling water for 4-5 minutes, then cool it in ice water) and add it to the Caesar!

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