3 ways with asparagus

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Blitzed into a creamy dip; nestled with noodles and crunchy radishes in crystal rolls; or hanging out with poached eggs and pancetta – here’s how to make the most of the season’s spears.

ASPARAGUS-AND-FENNEL SALAD WITH PANCETTA AND POACHED EGG

asparagus-and-fennel-salad-with-pancetta-and-poached-egg

  • Grill 8 slices pancetta for 4–5 minutes, or until crisp.
  • Bring a saucepan of water to a gentle simmer. Add 1 t distilled white vinegar, then stir the water to create a whirlpool. Crack 1 free-range egg into the water and poach for 4 minutes, or until the white is cooked and the yolk is runny. Repeat the process with 3 more eggs.
  • Bring a large saucepan of salted water to the boil. Blanch 170 g green asparagus and 170 g white asparagus in the water for 1 minute.
  • Using a mandolin or a vegetable peeler, shave thin ribbons o 1 fennel bulb and place in iced water. Place the asparagus, fennel, poached eggs, pancetta and 15 g pea shoots onto a large serving dish. Mix 2 T Dijon mustard, 4 T extra virgin olive oil, 2 T white wine vinegar, 2 t maple syrup and salt to taste, then drizzle over the salad. Serve with sourdough.

ASPARAGUS DIP

asparagus-dip

  • Blanch 200 g asparagus tips in boiling salted water for 30 seconds, then plunge into iced water.
  • Drain and roughly chop, then place in a bowl with 6 finely chopped red salad onions, the zest of 1⁄2 lemon and 250 g chunky cottage cheese. Blend using a hand-blender until just combined, then fold through an additional 250 g chunky cottage cheese. Spoon into the middle of a serving platter.
  • Blanch 170 g asparagus spears in the same manner as the tips, then shave thin ribbons from some of the spears using a vegetable peeler. Toss with the juice of 1 lemon and 2 T extra virgin olive oil and pile onto the dip. Stand the remaining asparagus spears around the dip and garnish with edible flowers.

ASPARAGUS CRYSTAL ROLLS

asparagus-crystal-rolls

  • Grill 100 g mini asparagus directly over a gas ame or under the grill, turning every few minutes, until slightly charred. Set aside.
  • Pour boiling water over the noodles from 1 x Woolworths Vietnamese crystal spring roll kit, set aside to soak for 10 minutes or until tender, then drain.
  • While the noodles are soaking, soak the rice paper wrappers from the kit in cold water until pliable. Finely grate 6 radishes and chop 100 g Woolworths exotic tomatoes.
  • Place a rice paper wrapper onto a clean, damp dish towel, then add some of the noodles, asparagus, grated radishes, chopped tomatoes and fresh basil. Fold in the sides to form a parcel. Repeat with the remaining wrappers. Serve with 2 thinly sliced spring onions, 2 quartered limes and soya sauce.

Discover more recipes featuring asparagus here.

TASTE Article by: TASTE

The TASTE team is a happy bunch of keen cooks and writers, always on the look out for the next food trend or the next piece of cake.

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