Parmesan aux Asperges
Available all year around, asparagus is at its best in early springtime. The composition of this tasty veggie is 93% water, low in calories, sodium and a good source of vitamins, minerals and dietary fiber. As a side dish or an appetizer, get a boost on your vitamin and mineral intake with this quick and delicious recipe for Asparagus Parmesan.
1 1/2 pounds of asparagus
1 cup of grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup white wine
A few drops of freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 tsp olive oil
2 tsp butter
salt and pepper to taste
The stem thickness of asparagus indicates the age of the plant. Older, thicker stalks can be woody and the bottom portion often contains sand and soil and should be discarded. Prepare the thoroughly cleansed stalks by using a peeler to remove the lower portion, then break it with your fingers, at the point of freshness. Under running cold tap water, do a final rinse of the asparagus and set aside. To see how this is accomplished, view this brief instructional video where I first learned this tip at LeNôtre cooking school in Paris.
•• In a large pan add two inches of cold water with 1/4 tsp of salt and bring to a boil. •• Plunge the asparagus into the boiling water, cover with a lid and cook for 2 minutes. •• Reserve 1/4 cup of the boiled cooking water and set aside. •• Drain and cool the asparagus under cold water to halt further cooking and to retain a nice green color for presentation. ••
•• Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. •• In an oven baking dish, arrange the asparagus in a single layer. •• Spritz with 1/4 cup white wine, a few drops of freshly squeezed lemon juice along with a few teaspoons of the reserved cooking water over the top of the asparagus. •• Sprinkle with 1 cup of freshly grated Parmesan cheese, 1 tsp of olive oil and 2 tsps of butter over the top. •• Salt and pepper to taste. •• Place the baking dish in the oven and cook for 3 to 5 minutes or until the Parmesan cheese begins to bubble and turn golden. This is a fast process, so stay on it! •• Place the Asparagus Parmesan onto a serving dish and serve immediately. ••
•• Bon Appétit ••