Sunday, May 31, 2009
We visited the Schlosser Farm near Powassan last weekend and were happy to find that the local asparagus is ready! Schlossers are the largest asparagus grower in the area. Maurice Schlosser told me that a well tended asparagus patch can produce for twenty or more years.
You can visit the farm or pick some up at the Powassan Farmer's Market on Saturday morning. Fresh asparagus will keep in your refrigerator for 3 or so weeks. I don't rest the stems in water but I know some people recommend this. I just wrap well and keep cold.
I had been waiting to have grilled asparagus again. Roasting it intensifies the flavour and gives it a bit of a caramelized richness. Fresh asparagus needs no accoutrements but you can sprinkle on some vinegar like balsamic or shavings of a good hard grating cheese if you like.
1 bunch local asparagus (about 20 spears)- about 350 grams
1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil - 15 ml
1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper - 1.25 ml
1. Trim ends from asparagus and drizzle with olive oil and freshly ground black pepper. Toss to coat. I use a little brush to paint.
2. Place on a hot, clean grill. You can also use a grill basket if you don't want to worry about asparagus falling between the grill rods. Grill for 5 minutes or so on each side. Make sure they don't burn as they will become bitter.
NUTRITION FACTS (1/4 or recipe or ):50 calories, 3.5 g fat, 4 g carbohydrate, 2 g fibre and 2 g protein. %Daily Values are 10% Vitamin A, 8% vitamin C, 10% iron and 2% calcium. Good nutritional news on vitamins and minerals. Green asparagus is also an excellent source of folic acid.
FREEZING ASPARAGUS: keep in a bundle with elastics on. Wash under running cold water and drain. Wrap up in plastic freezer bags. Mine froze well and I am still using some I have left from the 2008 season. Using it frozen is easy and you can slice frozen asparagus into smaller pieces. I used it in soups, risotto and purees like the pesto mainly. Freezing this way without blanching first was a successful experiment!