While I definitely have more strawberry recipes to share with you, I wanted to interrupt the berry goodness with an easy side dish recipe in case any of you were still looking for something to go along with your Easter dinner. I never really remember eating asparagus prior to starting this blog, but since then, it's become one of my favorite vegetables to prepare. It is great prepared a lot of ways and also cooks relatively quickly. Speaking of asparagus, a couple weeks ago I saw a great tip about how to find where the woody portion ends. Take a spear and bend it towards the bottom. The place where it snaps is the end of the woody portion. You can then use it to roughly measure the other pieces so that you don't end up cutting off too much of the vegetable. I used this when I was trimming some asparagus last week, and it worked great!
This recipe is one that I found in Cooking Light in their section about Meyer lemons. I actually cheated and used a normal lemon, but I'm sure that Meyers would make it that much better. It's pretty simple in that you roast asparagus and then combine it with browned butter (what doesn't get better with the addition of a little bit of browned butter?). Easy. Simple. Delicious.
On a side note, I'm not sure this is "food blog appropriate," but has anyone else ever noticed that asparagus makes a certain liquid that leaves your body smell a little funny? It actually contains a sulfur-like compound that is broken down in your digestive system. Only about half of us actually have the enzyme that creates the smell. So, take a poll and impress your friends with your knowledge - I'm just joking about the poll :)
Jokes aside, this is a side dish that I'm going to keep in my files. Enjoy!
Roasted Asparagus with Browned Butter
From Cooking Light March 2011
1 lb. asparagus spears, trimmed
1 Tbsp. olive oil
1/2 tsp. Kosher salt (or scant 1/4 tsp. table salt)
1/4 tsp. black pepper
2 Tbsp. butter
2 Tbsp. fresh Meyer lemon juice (or normal lemon juice)
1-1/2 tsp. chopped fresh thyme (or 1/2 tsp. dried)
1 tsp. grated Meyer lemon rind (or normal lemon rind)
Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Place asparagus in a foil-lined roasting pan; drizzle with oil. Sprinkle evenly with salt and pepper. Bake for 8 minutes or until crisp-tender.
Meanwhile, melt the butter in a small skillet over medium heat; cook 3 minutes or until lightly browned, shaking pan occasionally. Remove from heat; stir in juice. Drizzle butter mixture over asparagus; toss well to coat. Sprinkle thyme and rind over asparagus.
Yield: 4 servings