Archives for May 15, 2014

The Perfect Asparagus – Blanched and Sautéed!

The Perfect Asparagus – Blanched and Sautéed!

May is National Asparagus Month.  I am psyched!  Asparagus is one of my favorite vegetables, and this is the time of year to enjoy it!  Along with tasting great, it does have some super health benefits too:
  • Low in calories
  • Contains no fat or cholesterol
  • Low in sodium
  • Source of fiber
  • Rich in Vitamins A, B, C and folic acid
  • Good source of potassium, iron and antioxidants
  • Provides more nutrients than most other vegetables

The perfect way to prepare asparagus is blanched and sautéed!

Not only is it super fast, it is almost fool-proof, which is great for me given I am not patient in the kitchen! Here is the quick and easy way to make perfect asparagus! 

Selecting
  • Look for firm, straight, and THIN stems with good green color. 
  • Tips should be green or purplish in color with CLOSED tips.
  • Try and prepare asparagus the same day you purchase it, to help retain the best flavor and tenderness. 
Prepping
  • Wash stalks in cold water. 
  • Snap off the woody ends or trim about 1 1/2 inches from the bottom of the stalks.
Blanching
  • Blanching is a cooking method in which food is cooked for a short time in boiling water then immediately cooled in an ice water bath. It works great for asparagus because it helps preserve the flavor, crisp texture, and bright green color. Blanching is used to slightly cook the asparagus and sautéing is used to finish the cooking.
  • In a large pot, add water, a little salt and bring to a boil.
  • Prepare ice bath in a bowl filling half way with water and ice.
  • Place asparagus into boiling water and cook for 2 minutes!  Do not over cook.  You will be tempted, but don’t. (Small thin stalks take 2 minutes, large thick stalks take up to 4 minutes). The stalks will turn BRIGHT GREEN  and be crispy.  
  • With tongs, remove asparagus and immerse in the ice water bath for 1 minute to stop the cooking.
  • Remove asparagus from ice bath and place onto a paper towel.
Sauteing
  • In large fry pan melt 2T butter.  Add seasonings of garlic, pepper and some lemon juice.
  • Gently add the blanched asparagus to the pan.
  • Sautee for 2 minutes.
  • Serve and enjoy.
blanching and sauteing asparagus
Please share with us your perfect asparagus recipe!
Looking for more love of asparagus, read how Asparagus has been treasured throughout history