In case I haven’t mentioned it before, I should disclose now that I am not a vegetable eater. Well, that’s not entirely true. I do eat some vegetables, but for the most part they are not cooked and they are not green. Beans… asparagus… brussel sprouts… no thank you. Nick, on the other hand, loves his veggies. I wish I could love them, I really do. I know they are very good for me. I have tried to “outgrow” my dislike and try them again and cooked in different ways… but, it doesn’t work. I just don’t like them. However, far be it from me to keep Nick from eating his vegetables!
Now, little did I know that asparagus is actually known as an aphrodisiac! According to a list found on Mele Cotte’s blog:
Given it’s phallic shape, asparagus is frequently enjoyed as an aphrodisiac food. Feed your lover boiled or steamed spears for a sensuous experience. The Vegetarian Society suggests “eating asparagus for three days for the most powerful affect”.
Who knew, right? I have entered my asparagus in the Kitchen of Love blogging event, hosted by Mele Cotte, which is a collection of aphrodisiac foods. Head on over to check out the event and be sure to check out the round up that will be posted on February 12, 2008.
This pan roasted style of asparagus is Nick’s absolute favorite way to have them prepared and is now the default method in our house. I hope that all of you veggie-lovers enjoy it as well! (And who knows, maybe it will give your mojo a boost as well!)
Pan Roasted Asparagus
(Source: Cook’s Illustrated, Fall 2007 Issue)
1 Tablespoon olive oil
1 Tablespoon butter
2 pounds thick* asparagus spears, ends trimmed
Kosher salt and ground black pepper
1/2 lemon (optional)
1. Heat oil and butter in 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat. When butter has melted, add half of asparagus to skillet with tips pointed in one direction; add remaining spears with tips pointed in opposite direction. Using tongs, distribute spears in even layer (spears will not quite fit into single layer); cover and cook until asparagus is bright green and still crisp, about 5 minutes.
2. Uncover and increase heat to high; season asparagus with salt and pepper. Cook until spears are tender and well browned along one side, 5 to 7 minutes, using tongs to occasionally move spears from center of pan to edge of pan to ensure all are browned. Transfer asparagus to serving dish, adjust seasonings with salt and pepper, and, if desired, squeeze lemon half over spears. Serve immediately.
* This recipe works best with asparagus that is at least 1/2 inch thick near the base. If using thinner spears, reduce the covered cooking time to 3 minutes and the uncovered cooking time to 5 minutes.
Filed under: Vegetables