Asparagus season is here

I love the New York Times food column, it is generally spot on and the recipes are fab.

But I didn’t even finish reading this one after seeing this comment:

“ice-cold asparagus is unpleasant”

Clearly an asparagus novice

How to Cook Asparagus

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I don’t believe I’ve eaten ice cold asparagus. And I don’t believe I want to try.

The very first of the British asparagus is out. But only in a handful of southern supermarkets. It’ll be a coupel of weeks or so before we second class Brits get to see it. 'Tis early due to the mild weather - usually the season starts on 23 April - appropriately enough St Georges Day.

Yah, as an asparagus lover (the white kind, of course), I can’t imagine eating ice-cold asparagus. Anything that’s ice cold (besides ice cream, obvy) won’t have much flavor, so… what would be the point?

That said, my favorite way to eat (white) asparagus is steamed & served with lots of drawn butter, fresh parsley, boiled potatoes and ample amounts of smoked ham.

And now I can’t wait to be back in Germany for the season :slight_smile:

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Just checked yesterday, everything was still under wraps and quiet. I only eat asparagus from this farm near my house (in the countryside 15mins by bicycle) and am waiting for their announcement when the farm shop is open for the first time this season, usually mid april. The partner and I polish off between 12-17 kilos every season. The asparagus farm people are happy with us and astonished at the same time.

Photos from last year. Still the same every year.

“Asparagus spiders” in the field. Still, it’s back-breaking work. Workers here are often Poles and eastern Europeans in general.

Inside the processing shed. A very small one, as is the whole farm. The box (top corner, right) with blue light is the peeling machine. Costs eur.1 extra to peel and vacuum seal your spears. Saves time and keeps well. The small containers filled with water are sorting station (most clearly seen in bottom row).

And just to tease @linguafood:joy:

PS: I also eat my asparagus raw but never ice cold!

Like this (shaved, squeezed lime juice all over):

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If the UK government carries on with its “hard Brexit”, your guess is as good as mine who is going to pick our asparagus. Certainly isnt going to be Brits - certainly not at a time when we’ve got good employment levels.

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Steamed slightly, left to cool and chopped into a big salad w/hard cheese shave and some chunks of salmon or grilled chicken? No?
If I buy a ginormous bag at Costco some of it ends up in a salad. Adds good nutty flavor. I’d say cool not ice cold. But not warm.
Ok, that’s a chain restaurant cliche, but still, I think it’s good.
But to each his own. :wink:

Not a fan of the white stuff (though my European parents considerd it a rare but worthy splurge) or the icy stuff–I prefer a version in the other direction.

I recently made some roasted pencil thin dark green spears, tossed in Trader Joe’s smoked olive oil and kosher salt. Roasted at high heat until they collapsed and got crunchy little heads. Delicious.

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I guess I didn’t take it quite that literally. I prefer asparagus blanched and chilled. I often toss it with teriyaki sauce and toasted sesame seeds and serve it chilled. It’s a favorite.

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Chilled is something else, tho. I’ve had nice asparagus salads with the green stuff.

I just can’t wait for the local stuff; last year was a bust and this year’s very warm Feb and freezing/snowy March doesn’t bode well for local crops. So I bought South American last week and have roasted it with garlic, s&p & olive oil. A local restaurant has asparagus wrapped in prosciutto and sprinkled in parm–a must-order app.

Count me as not a fan of cold asparagus.

In the past few years local farmers have clued me in on both white and purple asparagus.

I LOVE asparagus. Love love love love with hearts and flowers and rainbows. It will be a while before we see any local asparagus, and then it’s really quite expensive- i remember seeing $9/lb last year.
With such a looonnngggg winter asparagus seems to be the first vegetable that is a sign of spring around here- even if it is from mexico. I love the idea of only buying local seasonal veggies but in reality i’m tired of cabbages, carrots, and root vegetables so i succumbed to the imported asparagus and enjoyed every last bite.

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We grow a LOT of asparagus here in NJ. Every auction you go to has an asparagus bundler in it. The local stuff is just coming up - it’s usually ready when the daffodils bloom although they are early this year. So - mid-April. I like it any way. Soup, salad, steamed, with Hollandaise, with butter. My favorite is grilled with olive oil & garlic. When the weather’s crappy we do it inside on the George Foreman. Yum!

My favorite spring pasta: penne+asparagus+french bean+squash+pine nuts+loads of tarragon.

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First of the British bought today!

It’ll be eaten simply steamed and drenched in melted butter in the traditional British way. It’ll be some time before we tire of this and feel the need for a different preparation.

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I can’t wait for asparagus season. But here it will be roasted with olive oil and garlic. And yes, it will be some time before we tire of this. But if I’m looking for a change-up, steamed and drenched in butter sounds good too.

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It’s on sale in the Boston area this week but couldn’t be local unless greenhouse-grown. I was raised on canned (meh) and never had fresh until I was living on my own. Half my lifetime ago, I was at a multi-day, summer conference which had a college dining hall meal plan. They always had fresh steamed spears that were marinated in Italian dressing and served at room temperature. I couldn’t get enough of it and to this day, it’s my favorite way of preparing asparagus.

Yada yada ANYTHING AT ALL yada yada…

Agree!

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I’ve purchased local CA asparagus for the last couple weeks at the Alemany Farmer’s Market in SF. I literally did a little dance when I saw Zuckerman’s had returned with the goods.

Needs a sprinkling of sea salt for perfection.

I don’t use salt in cooking nor, generally, add it to the food on my plate - but asparagus is an exception. Needs to be sea salt so you get a crunch as well as saltiness.

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Grilled, with a sprinkle of my best olive oil, a squeeze of lemon, and flaky salt. Diced hard-boiled eggs on top if I’m feeling ambitious.

I love all asparagus. It is excellent wrapped in prosciutto, too.

My friend really likes asparagus soup, but it kills me to do that to the pretty spears, so he only gets it when we have a a lot of leftovers.

“Food is a pretty good prism through which to view humanity.”

― Jonathan Gold