Asparagus is generally the first veggie to be served from the spring garden. Depending on weather and soil temperatures, we can expect growth to appear in late April to early May locally. We grow our asparagus in flower beds and borders. It is cut fresh almost daily through May and allowed to grow to maturity after early to mid-June. Asparagus is best straight from the garden, cut to about 7-9 inches while young and tender.
After cutting, the spears are washed, drained, and cut into bite-sized pieces. Meanwhile, a tablespoon of olive oil is heated on low heat while the drained pieces are coated with a mixture of 1 Tbsp. flour, 1 Tbsp. white cornmeal, and salt & pepper to taste. When the oil begins to sizzle, the pieces can be added and stir-fried until tender. For a real treat, serve immediately.
These pictures illustrate the steps I take to enjoy this treat. The first shows an 8" spear ready to cut. The second one shows the spears after they have been washed. The third shows the pieces the way I like them cut (bite-sized). The fourth shows the coated pieces being stir-fried (almost done). Seasonings can be adjusted to suit personal taste. Pre-mixed coatings may also be substituted.
Asparagus is loaded with nutrients and is a great source of potassium, thiamin, fiber, magnesium, calcium, and vitamins K, A, and C. Furthermore, it contains chromium and the amino acid asparagine as well. It It is high in folic acid: A 5-ounce serving provides 60 percent of your recommended daily intake. We hear a lot about free radicals these days. Asparagus contains a detoxifying compound (called glutathione) that helps destroy carcinogens. Therefore, asparagus may help fight certain cancers or protect against them, including bone, breast, lung, and colon cancers. In this age of health-conscious families, it is important to eat fresh, green, leafy, and colorful fruits and vegetables as often as possible. Why not eat the ones that taste good too?
Finally, this treat is ready to be enjoyed, as shown here.