Our favorite slender green vegetable is hitting the farmer’s market. Fresh asparagus spears have an irresistible snappy and sweet texture when enjoyed raw. Cooking the fibrous green vegetable unlocks nutrition and new flavors. Whether you want to enjoy it with a drizzle of olive oil, salt, and pepper, or you want steamed asparagus as your side dish, there are plenty of ways to cook asparagus.
You can prepare asparagus in the oven, on the stove, or even on the grill if you’re planning to cook outside. The technique selected depends on what taste experience you want and what is most convenient for you.
Your kids don’t want to eat asparagus, or are you bored of the same old way of eating them? This guide has got you covered. Let’s see five easy and delicious way to cook asparagus :
Preparing asparagus in the oven takes the longest time of all the mentioned methods, but it tastes incredible. You can also use lemon and garlic in this method to enhance the flavors.
How To Prepare Roasted Asparagus?
Step 1 – Preheat your oven to 220 C or 425 degrees F. Now, prepare your asparagus by breaking the bottom inch off each spear. Now spread the asparagus onto a parchment-lined baking sheet.
Step 2 – Now, drizzle a tablespoon of olive oil and a pinch of salt and pepper over the asparagus. As mentioned earlier, you can also crush a few garlic cloves and drizzle lemon juice. But again, this is entirely optional.
Step 3 – Roast asparagus for 10 to 15 minutes or till stalks are tender and tips are charred. You can also add grated parmesan for extra flavors.
Step 4 – Now, take the dish out of the oven and serve hot.
The most healthy way to cook asparagus is to steam the veggie. Doing this will preserve all the water-soluble vitamins which can be destroyed while boiling the vegetable.
How To Prepare Steamed Asparagus?
Step 1 – The first step is preparing the asparagus by rinsing and breaking the woody bottom inch off to the spear. Cut the asparagus into pieces so that they fit in your steamer basket.
Step 2 – Pour 1-inch water into the saucepan and fit the steamer basket. Bring the water to a boil.
Step 3 – Put the asparagus in the basket and let it steam for about 4 minutes or until tender and crisp.
Step 4 – Now drizzle lemon juice, oil, salt, pepper, and garlic on the asparagus and serve hot. Remember, do not overcook the asparagus to get the best flavors.
If you want to keep your hands oil-free, keeping the mess minimum, this recipe is for you.
How To Prepare Broiled Asparagus?
Step 1 – Set your oven on the broil setting.
Step 2 – In a rectangular baking dish, place asparagus. Now drizzle the vegetable or olive oil, sprinkle salt and pepper, and top with crushed garlic.
Step 3 – Wrap the dish with foil paper and toss until all the ingredients coat asparagus.
Step 4 – Cook asparagus 6-inches away from the upper heating element in the oven.
Step 5 – Broil the asparagus until light brown and tender for 8 to 10 minutes.
If you’re in a hurry or have surprise guests for dinner, this method is for you. Blanching asparagus helps to preserve nutrients and maintain higher quality.
How To Prepare Blanched Asparagus?
Step 1 – As you did with all the other methods, prepare the asparagus by breaking the bottom an inch off of each spear.
Step 2 – Boil water in a large pot and add a pinch of salt in the water for seasoning. You’ll have to mix freezing water and a few ice cubes in a pot for an ice bath.
Step 3 – Soak asparagus in the boiled water for 4 minutes or until tender and bright green.
Step 4 – Transfer the asparagus to the ice-cold water to stop the cooking process.
Pan Sauteed Asparagus
Cooking asparagus in a pan is a quick way of roasting nutritious vegetables that will give you a charred flavor.
How To Prepare Pan-Sauteed Asparagus?
Step 1 – Rinse the asparagus and break the bottom an inch off of each spear. Then, you can cut the asparagus into pieces to fit them in your saucepan.
Step 2 – Heat oil in the saucepan over medium heat. Add asparagus in the pan and cook for 5 minutes till they become bright green and tender. Add salt and pepper for seasoning.
Other Ways You Can Add Asparagus In Dishes:
- Toss it with pasta and pesto sauce.
- Diced into thin rings in a quiche, frittata, or a breakfast casserole.
- Wrap it in bacon and then roast!
- Dip it in a breading a deep-fry or bake it for asparagus fries.
- Add it to chicken breasts for a one-pot meal.
Asparagus is a great side dish to enhance your main course. That’s why you must cook them well. The method you choose to cook will depend on your preference and the time you’ve got. Not sure how to select the best asparagus? Here’s how you can do it?
How To Select Asparagus?
Spring is the best season to buy asparagus, i.e., between February to June. However, they are available all year round. You can find asparagus in colors like green, purple, and white. If you want to cook them quickly, choose narrower spears.
Also, while cooking, adjust the cooking time for thick or thin spears.
How Should You Store Asparagus?
It’s best if you store the asparagus in the crisper section of your refrigerator. If you are not eating the vegetable within two days, trim a ½ inch off the bottoms and wrap in a damp paper towel placed in a plastic bag in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
You can also place asparagus in a tall jar with 1 cup of water in the refrigerator and loosely cover the top with a plastic bag. If you see the tip getting mushy, it’s time that you toss them out.
Health Benefits And Nutrition In Asparagus
The nutrition-dense vegetable has impressive micronutrients like calcium, iron, phosphorus, magnesium, zinc, vitamin C, potassium, B vitamins, vitamin K, Vit A, and Vit E. It also contains flavonoids for antioxidant properties.
The healthy soluble and insoluble fibers present in the asparagus help you with good digestion. You will get the following nutrients by eating one cup or 134 g of asparagus :
- 27 calories
- 0.12 grams of fat
- 2.1 grams of fiber
- 1.88 grams of sugar
- 2.95 grams of protein
The Bottom Line
With spring on your doorstep, it’s the best time to enjoy nutritious asparagus. There are many ways you can use the vegetable as a side dish or as an ingredient in your main dish. All the methods mentioned above are easy to cook and get ready in less time. Enjoy Cooking!