One of my favourite parts of spring is that it is asparagus season. It is a weird sort of vegetable but its vivid green and crunchy brilliance which requires so little to make it delicious is perfectly spring. There are so many more varieties of asparagus in Italy I am quite intrigued. There are a variety of thicknesses and sizes and then of course white asparagus too. I have memories of the horrid canned wormy version of this as a child but I thought that I should experiment with these too, although I have yet to brave it.
One of my random ‘goals’ has been to eat as much asparagus as possible before the season ends.
This is what has been appearing in my kitchen:
>>> an Italian abundance bowl with cannellini beans and oven roasted tomatoes
>>> inspired by Joy the Baker’s asparagus and pistachio dish I made a heartier warm salad with asparagus, lentils, peas, hazelnuts and feta which I have to say tasted freaking amazing!
>>> Tania’s lentil falafel with a side of lightly fried skinny asparagus.
>>> And a quick and light seasonal mac and cheese.
springtime mac and cheese
This is roughly how much I use per person, just add for each person you are cooking for.
- 50g dry pasta, I use a penne made with 25% vegetables but whatever you prefer.
- 150g asparagus
- 60g peas, frozen
- scoop of ricotta
- teaspoon of pesto
- olive oil for cooking
- additional seasoning as you like
Method: Get some water boiling and throw in the pasta. Once the pasta is in throw in the chopped asparagus into a pan and lightly fry to your preferred texture (I like mine with slightly al dente). When the pasta is almost done throw in the frozen peas. Drain peas and pasta, add cooked asparagus and then stir through ricotta, pesto and seasoning. Boom meal done in the time it takes to cook pasta.
Have you made any different asparagus dishes lately? Any new or old favourites?