It’s certainly not news that this winter’s weather has been a bit extreme. . .as many predicted it would be. Now that it’s March, the month of SPRING, how can we not dream of hyacinth and daffodils. Of strawberries and rhubarb. And the sun…. ahhhhhh, can’t you just feel it? NO?? Well, maybe we can conjure up spring with a tasty recipe.
Of all vegetables, perhaps none other than asparagus represents spring so well. Those adorable spears that poke their heads through the ground in early spring are just begging to be washed, and washed again (they’re sandy little things) and cooked up simply without much fanfare. When you have your own patch, as we do here at the Brampton, ephemeral is the word that best describes asparagus. Get them while they’re here; eat them early and often; at breakfast, lunch and dinner; until you’re almost, but not quite, tired of them. Then POOF, they’re gone. Wait until next year.
Of course asparagus is available year round thanks to modern living, but it definitely tastes better when it was grown locally, and you’ve picked it yourself.
This is a recipe for a simple, elegant and delicious asparagus dish inspired by our friend Matthew Lovette of Jumping Rocks Photography, who takes all of the beautiful pictures on our website. He’s a pretty good cook, too!
Apsaragus, Spring Pea, and Lemon Pasta
1/2 pound of your favorite pasta
1# fresh asparagus spears, washed very well, and cut into roughly 1 inch pieces (separate the tips from the rest of the spears)
1/2 bunch scallions, white and green parts, chopped
1 1/2 cups fresh peas
1 clove garlic, pressed
zest and juice of one lemon
small handful fresh parsley, chopped fine
1/4 cup olive oil
1-2 tablespoons butter, optional
salt and pepper to taste
parmesan and/or ricotta cheese, optional
Boil pasta according to package directions. Reserve about 1/2 cup of the cooking water.
Place a large frying pan over medium heat. Heat olive oil and add garlic and scallions. Saute for a minute or two without letting the garlic brown. Add the asparagus spears, holding the tips back for a few minutes (they will cook faster). Saute, stirring often until the spears start to soften, about 3 minutes. Next add the peas and the asparagus tips. Stir well. When the tips are bright green, add the reserved pasta water. Turn the heat up and let it just start to bubble. If you want a richer sauce, add the butter at this point and swirl pan to melt it. Remove from heat and finally add the lemon juice and zest and the parsley. Toss the whole thing with the cooked pasta. Add salt and pepper to taste. Top with freshly grated parmesan and/or a dollop of fresh ricotta cheese if you wish.
We promise spring is right around the corner…Take advantage of our Spring Break Special and get up close and personal with our asparagus patch yourself!