Normally, I'm in favor of eating seasonally, and locally, as much as possible. But the thing is ... I really like asparagus - and the husband does too. Enough so that I'm willing to break a few of my own rules and eat it off-season. That being said, the thick woody clubs that are available now bear no resemblance to those lovely, pencil thin, stalks of spring. My solution? Fire up the oven and get roasting!
Roasted Asparagus with Walnuts and Parmesan:
- one bunch of fresh asparagus
- extra-virgin olive oil
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- some chopped walnuts and some freshly grated Parmesan cheese for garnish
Wash and trim the asparagus, snapping or cutting off the tough ends of each stalk. Place the asparagus in a single layer on a large, rimmed cookie sheet and drizzle with some of the olive oil, rolling them around to coat. I probably used about a tablespoon of oil, but didn't measure. Sprinkle the stalks with some Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper and roast in the middle of a pre-heated 400 degree oven for 15 to 20 minutes, turning once, until tender and slightly caramelized.
Transfer the roasted aspargus to a plate and top with the chopped walnuts and Parmesan cheese. Serve and enjoy!
This recipe is mainly about technique. I've adapted it from one in The Food and Wine Lover's Diet that called for hazelnuts and Pecorino Romano. Don't have any walnuts on hand? Feel free to use some almonds or pecans instead. Got a chunk of Grana Padano hanging out in your fridge? Go ahead and use that in place of the Parm. Its all good. I mean its really, really good! Roasting brings out the subtle nutty flavor that you never knew was tucked inside those springy stalks.
For my money, roasting is the perfect (and maybe only way) to treat winter asparagus. It was so good we finished an entire bunch between the two of us. I hope you'll try it!
So, what's your favorite roasted veg? Curious Diva wants to know.