IN SEASON ASPARAGUS

Asparagus – the epitome of spring! Fresh, green, crispy and crunchy. The asparagus season is a short one, being only available in New Zealand from September – December. Make the most of the asparagus season and get the BBQ fired up for some of our simple and delicious recipes this month!

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Crunchy Parmesan Asparagus Chips

 

Ready-in: 25 mins

Serves: 4–5

 

Crunchy Asparagus Chips

¾ cup panko breadcrumbs

3 tablespoons chopped basil leaves

3 tablespoons chopped parsley leaves and stalks

½ cup finely grated Parmesan cheese

½ cup flour, seasoned with 1 teaspoon salt

2 eggs, whisked with 2 tablespoons milk

250g asparagus spears, ends trimmed and halved widthways

 

To Serve

Zest and juice of 1 lime

3 tablespoons mayonnaise

 

  1. In a large bowl, combine breadcrumbs, basil, parsley and Parmesan cheese. In separate bowls, place seasoned flour and whisked eggs.
  2. Coat each piece of asparagus first in flour, then egg, then breadcrumbs, shaking off excess as you go. Set aside.
  3. Heat a drizzle of oil in a large fry-pan on medium-high heat and cook asparagus for 2-3 minutes, turning regularly, until golden and crunchy. Set aside on paper towels and season.  
  4. While asparagus cooks, mix lime zest, juice and mayonnaise in a small bowl.

 

Tip: Cut any larger asparagus spears in half lengthways

 

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BBQ Preserved Lemon and Oregano Asparagus

 

Ready-in: 20 mins

Serves:   4–5                                             

 

BBQ Preserved Lemon and Oregano Asparagus

3 tablespoons olive oil

60g preserved lemon, white flesh discarded and rind finely chopped

3 tablespoons chopped oregano leaves  

Juice of ½ lemon

½ red chilli, finely sliced (optional)

250g asparagus spears, ends trimmed

 

Preheat BBQ grill to high. Prepare your vegetables.

  1. In a large bowl or small baking dish, combine olive oil, preserved lemon, oregano, lemon juice and chilli (if using) and mix well to combine.
  2. Add asparagus to mix, season well and toss to coat. Set aside to marinate for at least 10 minutes.
  3. Shake off excess marinade (reserving marinade), place asparagus onto BBQ grill, and cook for 1-2 minutes each side, until lightly charred, bright green and tender. Alternatively, use a medium fry-pan or griddle pan on high heat.

To serve, place BBQ preserved lemon and oregano asparagus on a sharing dish and drizzle over reserved marinade.

 

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Fennel, Orange and Asparagus Salad with Herby Spiced Dressing

 

Ready-in: 25 mins

Serves: 4                                

 

Herby Spiced Dressing

½ teaspoon coriander seeds

½ teaspoon cumin seeds

¼ teaspoon fennel seeds

¼ teaspoon caraway seeds

1 clove garlic, minced

½-1 green chilli, finely chopped (optional)

1 teaspoon finely grated ginger

½ shallot, finely diced

¼ cup finely chopped parsley leaves and stalks

¼ cup finely chopped coriander leaves and stalks

¼ cup finely chopped mint leaves

Juice of ½ lemon

2-3 tablespoons olive oil

 

Fennel, Orange and Asparagus salad

2-3 baby fennel (reserve fronds)

250g asparagus spears

2 oranges

1 tablespoon olive oil

2-3 radishes

1 apple

 

To Serve

Reserved fennel fronds

Juice of ½ lemon

 

Prepare your vegetables.

  1. Heat a small pan on medium heat and toast coriander, cumin, fennel and caraway seeds for about 2 minutes, until toasted and fragrant.
  2. Place seeds in blender and blend until crushed. Alternatively, crush in a mortar and pestle, or with the back of a fry-pan on a clean board. Set aside.
  3. Place remaining dressing ingredients (except olive oil) in blender and blend until nearly smooth and place into a small bowl. Alternatively, if you do not have a blender, just place chopped ingredients into a small bowl. Add oil and season to taste. Cover and set aside.
  4. Very finely slice fennel and peel asparagus into long ribbons. Peel and segment oranges and toss with fennel, asparagus and olive oil in a large bowl. Season and set aside to marinate.
  5. While asparagus marinates, thinly slice radishes and cut apple into matchsticks or grate. Toss through asparagus salad.  

To serve, scatter asparagus salad onto a large serving plate, drizzle with herby spiced dressing and garnish with reserved fennel fronds. Squeeze over lemon juice to serve.

 

Tip: If you don’t one of the spices, your dressing will be just as delicious without it. You can also alternatively, cut asparagus into halves widthways and then quarters lengthways, instead of peeling. Squeeze segmented orange remains to utilise all the remaining juice.

For another level of summer deliciousness, cut baby fennel in half lengthways, drizzle with a little oil and salt and cook on BBQ grill until lightly charred, about 5 minutes.  

 

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Asparagus Rolls with Coriander BBQ Naan Breads and Korma Mayonnaise

 

Ready-in: 25 mins      

Serves: 4–5                                             

 

Coriander BBQ Naan Breads

2 teaspoons melted butter

1 tablespoon chopped coriander leaves and stalks

1 clove garlic, minced

3-4 naan breads

 

Asparagus

1½ teaspoons olive oil

1½ teaspoons butter

250g asparagus spears, woody ends trimmed and halved lengthways

Juice of ½ lemon

 

Korma Mayonnaise

2 teaspoons korma curry paste

3 tablespoons mayonnaise

 

To Serve  

¼-½ cup crispy shallots

¼-½ cup picked coriander leaves

Preheat oven to 230oC. Preheat BBQ grill to high heat.

  1. Combine melted butter, coriander and garlic in a small bowl and brush over 1 side of each naan bread. Grill breads on BBQ for about 1 minute each side, until lightly charred and warmed through.
  2. While breads cook, heat olive oil and butter in a large fry-pan on medium heat and cook asparagus for about 3 minutes, turning occasionally until bright green and tender (alternatively, cook on BBQ grill, omitting butter). When cooked, squeeze over lemon juice.
  3. While asparagus cooks, mix together korma paste and mayonnaise in a small bowl.
  4. When naan breads are warm, tear each bread into 3-4 pieces.

To serve, place 1-2 pieces of asparagus in each piece of coriander BBQ naan bread, drizzle with korma mayonnaise and top with plenty of crispy shallots and coriander leaves.

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