Nothing says “spring” like asparagus. These deep green stalks mostly slender, but sometimes not – with a creamy, but slightly astringent taste become perfection after roasting. Steaming asparagus are nice as well, but there’s something to roasting them that brings out their true character. Asparagus stalks become wilted a bit and sweeten up in the most pleasant way, sort of like an aging grape on a vine.
The process of roasting asparagus is as simple as tossing them with a touch of olive oil and placing them in a hot oven. Some juice from half a lemon or lime is great upon exiting the oven because it soaks into the outer layer like a sponge and brings a nice acidity to the vegetable.
As for the sauce, don’t forget the sauce! A quick puree of fresh herbs mixed with mayonnaise and buttermilk take this already pleasant dish to a new place. A spoonful of this stuff over hot steamy asparagus and you have yourself a great plate of springtime elegance.
1 pound asparagus, bottom 1/4 cut-offs
salt & pepper
2 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves
1 tablespoon fresh chives, minced
2 heaping tablespoons mayonnaise
1/4 cup buttermilk
pinch of salt & pepper
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Toss asparagus with 1 tablespoon olive oil and place on a sheet pan. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and roast in oven for 18-20 minutes, or until fork tender.
- While asparagus is roasting – in a food processor add herbs. Pulse until finely chopped. Add mayonnaise, buttermilk, salt and pepper and pulse until combined. Place sauce in a small bowl.
- Remove asparagus from oven and squeeze lemon juice over top. Place asparagus on a plate and spoon sauce over top. Enjoy!