Cooking Asparagus Is Easy!

Summer is almost here! That means fresh asparagus is available at the grocery store.  Take the time to learn the many ways to enjoy it.  It is an easy vegetable to buy and prepare.

Buying:  When buying asparagus, choose bright green round stalks with closed, compact and firm tips.  Also look for cut ends that are not dry.  Asparagus stalks should be about the same size so cooking will be even.  Before cooking, wash in cold running water.  Break off the stalk ends that look brown and tough.  Try one of these cooking methods:
  • Steaming:  First you need to tie a bundle of asparagus spears together with kitchen string, just under the tips and also near the bottom, making sure the bottom ends are level.  Place the bundle in a tall pot of 2 inches of boiling water for 5-8 minutes, depending on the thickness of the spears.  While the ends of the asparagus are being boiled, the tips are actually being steamed.  The end result should be bright green, crisp, tender spears.
  • Boiling:  Lay the asparagus spears in a large skillet with about an inch of water.  Boil for up to 5 minutes, depending on thickness of the spears. 
  • Microwaving:  Lay asparagus in a microwave-safe baking dish, with tips towards the center.  Add about a 1/4 cup of water; cover and microwave for 4-5 minutes.
  • Roasting:  Place asparagus on a baking sheet coated with non-stick cooking spray and roast in a preheated 450 degree oven for about 10-15 minutes, depending on thickness of the spears.  Or, instead of using cooking spray, pour a little olive oil over the asparagus before roasting.  Try our Delicious Roasted Asparagus recipe.
  • Grilling:  Place asparagus spears on a preheated (medium-high heat) grill sprayed with olive oil spray and cook for about 5-8 minutes until tender, turning occasionally. 
Asparagus can be enjoyed in many dishes as soups, salads, stir-fries, scrambled eggs and pasta.   It can be eaten both hot and cold.  To see other recipes using asparagus, click here

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