Add Asparagus to Spring Dip
Asparagus season is in full swing and according to Tim Barrie of Barrie’s Asparagus Farm, this year’s crop is better than ever. Barrie’s Asparagus & Country Market is the fourth generation harvesting local asparagus and producing high quality gourmet foods such as asparagus pasta and sauces, crackers, tortilla chips, pickled vegetables and more. Our theme at the store this month is, “Simply Seasonal” and we’ve been cooking with asparagus as much as possible — here are some easy ideas and a recipe to showcase this delicious super-food:
- Toss asparagus with olive oil and salt/pepper and roast in a 425 oven until tender, about 10-12 minutes depending on the thickness of the spears. Drizzle with aged balsamic vinegar and/or grated Parmesan before serving, if desired.
- Lighten up your traditional guacamole recipe by substituting half (or more) of the amount of avocados for pureed asparagus; serve with fresh vegetables and tortilla chips for dipping.
- Toss steamed asparagus with a touch of sesame oil and garnish with white and/or black sesame seeds for an Asian twist.
- Finely chop asparagus and add to scrambled eggs or omelets.
- Roast asparagus and add to a mixed green salad with goat cheese, oranges and toasted almonds.
- Spread a pizza crust with pesto and top with cooked asparagus, chicken, caramelized onions and your favourite cheese.
- 1 large clove garlic, peeled
- 3 tablespoons shallots or red onion, roughly chopped
- 1 pound asparagus, cooked and chopped
- 1 ripe avocado, peeled, pit removed
- the juice of 1 lime
- ¼ cup fresh cilantro
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon chili powder
- ¼ teaspoon cumin
- ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- tortilla chips, pita wedges and fresh vegetables for dipping
- Blitz garlic in a food processor until finely chopped. Add shallots and blitz again until shallots are finely chopped.
- Add remaining ingredients to the food processor and puree until mixture is soft and combined (you may have to scrape down the sides of the bowl with a spatula).
- Transfer to a serving bowl and garnish with a sprig of fresh cilantro. Serve with tortilla chips, pita wedges and fresh vegetables.
If you prefer, you can omit the avocado altogether by adding another pound of asparagus.