Cooking With Asparagus

Asparagus is a delicious spring vegetable characteristic for being green in color with long pointy spears. Asparagus can be prepared in so many ways but it can be a bit intimidating if you haven’t worked with it. This vegetable can be enjoyed boiled, steamed, roasted, grilled or sautéed and in my opinion, every method is delicious!

Before cooking asparagus, you will first have to trim it. Trimming can be done in one of two ways – either by snapping off the woody ends wherever they break naturally or trimming the ends with a knife and by peeling the woody bits with a peeler. After cleaning it up, it’s ready for cooking!

To boil asparagus, prepare your salted water and add the asparagus once it comes to a boil. Boil it for 5 minutes or so, depending on the thickness, until it turns bright green. Toss in olive oil or melted butter and seasonings and serve.

Steaming asparagus is much like boiling it. Using a steam basket, boil your water and steam the asparagus on high for 2 to 4 minutes depending once again on the thickness and remove from the heat once it is bright green. Season with salt and pepper and a drizzle of lemon juice and serve.

Roasted asparagus has got to be one of the best preparation methods, resulting in nicely cooked stalks and slightly caramelized heads. To prepare roasted Asparagus, coat it with olive oil, salt, pepper and any additional spices of your choosing. Spread the stalks evenly on a sheet pan and roast it for 15 minutes in a 400 degree oven. Flip the asparagus or shake the pan about halfway through for even browning. Serve and enjoy!

To sauté asparagus, either cut the stalk small pieces or cook them whole. Saute the asparagus over medium-high heat in a pan with a few tablespoons of butter or olive oil. Cook, stirring frequently, until they begin to caramelize – about five minutes. Remove from the heat and season with salt and pepper and finish with a drizzle of lemon juice.

Don’t be intimidated by asparagus this spring, enjoy it!