Thursday, May 17, 2012
Asparagus with Lemon, Pine Nuts and Parmesan
From the kitchen of One Perfect Bite...Asparagus in the Pacific Northwest is coming to market with a vengeance and is available, at least at farm stands, for prices that are a gift to consumers. I paid $1.29 for a pound for asparagus today and my problem for the next few weeks will be serving it in ways that prevent it from becoming boring. It is really difficult to determine who to credit for today's recipe. I originally saw a version of it on Real Simple, but some backtracking leads me to believe the recipe first appeared in the cookbook, As Fresh As It Gets. While the recipe I'm featuring today is actually a stir-fry, it is more Italian than Chinese, and, save for technique, it has no ties to Asia. While I trim asparagus, I no longer shave it, so the dish came together quickly and I had it on the table within 30 minutes. This is a nice side to serve with plain grilled meats or poultry, and, if tossed with a lemon dressing, it has the potential to become a great salad. This is a very straightforward recipe and the only potential problem would be overcooking the asparagus. So, for heaven's sake, please don't do that. Here's the recipe I used to make this simple, yet delicious, side dish. I hope you enjoy it as much as we do.
Asparagus with Lemon, Pine Nuts and Parmesan...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite courtesy of Real Simple and the book As Fresh As It Gets by Christian Gaudreault and Star Spilos
2 tablespoons pine nuts
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 pounds asparagus (2 bunches), trimmed and cut into 2-inch pieces
kosher salt and black pepper
1 teaspoon thinly sliced lemon zest
1 ounce Parmesan, shaved
1) Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Spread pine nuts on a rimmed baking sheet and toast, tossing once, until golden, 4 to 5 minutes.
2) Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add asparagus and 1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper and cook, tossing occasionally, until tender, 4 to 6 minutes. Add pine nuts and toss to combine. Sprinkle with lemon zest and Parmesan. Serve immediately. Yield: 4 servings.
Cook's Note: You can also grill the asparagus in this recipe. Toss the whole asparagus with the oil, salt, and pepper. Grill over medium heat until tender, 4 to 6 minutes. Cut into 2-inch lengths and top with the lemon zest and Parmesan.
One Year Ago Today: Chocolate-Ricotta Ice Box Cake
Two Years Ago Today: Portobello Mushroom Burgers with Caramelized Onions and Roasted Garlic Aioli
Three Years Ago Today: Strawberry Glace Tart