Every spring I wait with great anticipation for fresh asparagus. This tender, glorious harbinger of spring is, to put it very simply, delicious.
Here are five recipes, each featuring asparagus.
What’s so great about asparagus?
Classified as a member of the lily family, asparagus is rich in folate, vitamin K, potassium, and vitamins A and C. It also contains glutathione, which detoxifies the body, fighting against a number of diseases, including cancer.
How to pick asparagus
Choose spears of medium thickness, which are uniformly green and have compact tips. Warning signs include a limp appearance or light colored, thick, woody stems.
Asparagus has a short shelf life and is best eaten soon after being picked from the field. However, it will last a few days when you trim the end of each stalk and place it upright in a glass with about an inch of water in the bottom. Lightly cover with a plastic bag and place your asparagus in the fridge.
The trick to asparagus is to not over-cook it. If you do, it will turn into a soggy, slimy mess in a hurry. When it turns bright green, you are literally 60 seconds away from taking it off of the burner or out of the oven.
This post is sponsored by Garden Spot Vegetable Farm. Located in Princeville, Illinois, owner, Jim Buckley and his family, cultivate 34 acres of vegetables and 375 fruit trees. Garden Spot is a no-spray farm, offering a variety of CSA packages. Check their Facebook page for current programs and options for available produce.
Generally served in high-end restaurants asparagus almondine is surprisingly easy to make at home. Although traditionally prepared using butter, you can substitute a good quality olive oil or vegetable broth for a vegan-friendly dish with excellent results.
My son and I created this recipe when we wanted to serve hash for supper, but were were flat out of russet potatoes. We subbed sweet potato, asparagus, green onion, and dill. The results were delicious. Add a splash of fresh lemon juice over the top and serve with a salad for a complete meal.
Asparagus stem soup
Our family has a 3 percent food waste goal. So, that means that we try really hard to not throw out any part of the plant. In this instance, we cook the tougher ends of the asparagus with onion, garlic, and fresh parsley. The resulting soup base is pureed until smooth. It is finished with plant-based milk, spices, and lemon juice. Garnish with green onion tops and finely diced tomatoes for color.
This recipe is incredibly versatile. I use whatever in-season veggies I have on hand. A splash of lemon juice over the top is seriously all you need.
Want a great hack? Make the base out of roasted spaghetti squash instead of traditional pasta. Yep! Tastes great and you don’t overdose on carbs. You’re welcome.
This simple, easy summer salad comes together in just minutes and tastes delicious. If you have a pound of mixed frozen vegetables on hand, you can sub it for the peas and it will add additional color to this dish.