So many people THINK they don’t like asparagus. That’s probably because your only experience with asparagus is the mushy stalks that are served atop a restaurant dinner. I didn’t like asparagus as a child, but now it’s one of my favorites. I look forward to eating fresh, local asparagus when it’s in season each spring. As soon as my farm market puts out a sign declaring “Homegrown Asparagus”, I’m there twice a week.
Here’s the secret:
Shhhhhh… they’ll all be doing it.
Sorry, channeling my inner Emeril there for a moment.
Yes, you want to roast it. And the best part? It’s SO EASY.
- olive oil
- sea salt
- freshly ground black pepper
- a block of parmesan cheese (the real deal, baby)
- Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.
- Wash your asparagus under cold water, and chop off the bottom 1/3 of the stalks. (If you want to be fancy, you can peel them, but I don’t bother.)
- Place them on a half-sheet pan (a baking pan with short sides.) Drizzle with olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Toss lightly and arrange in a single layer so they cook evenly.
- Pop ’em in the oven. Now here’s the trick. Watch closely. It may take 10 minutes, maybe 15 if they’re thick.
- Don’t overcook them.
- I’ve burned them more times than I care to count. It depends on how thick the stalks are, but for medium stalks, 10 minutes usually does it. You want them still crisp-tender. After 10 minutes, open the oven, shake the pan a little, try to flip them over. If they’re starting to brown, take them out. If not, give them another 3 or 4 minutes.
- Take them out and shred fresh Parmesan on top. Allow to melt and serve warm.
That’s it! So yummy. You can do the same thing with broccoli, cauliflower, or brussels sprouts, by the way. Parmesan is optional.