Cook with What's in Season: Asparagus, Spring

They are one of the first vegetables to hit the market every spring. It is always thrilling the first time you spot them, clumped tightly together, struggling to stand tall. But asparagus has a short growing season—they won't be around forever. They vanish quickly, leaving room for all of the bright summer vegetables.

In any case, I hope that you have been eating quite a lot of asparagus, because last I checked, it's getting more difficult to find these spindly guys at the farmers' market. No matter how I choose to make my asparagus: raw and in a salad, steamed and wrapped in prosciutto, boiled and then chilled, this is the recipe that I always revert back to.

It is simple and delicious. And because it is spring, that fickle season weather-wise, hot one moment, cool the next, it uses the oven only briefly. Roasting changes this vegetable immensely. After moments in the oven the tips become crisp and feathery, while the stalks become nutty and deeply savory, and topping the entire dish off with a healthy dose of Parmesan cheese verges on decadent.

So run! You better make it to the market and buy up mounds of asparagus, while you still can. Hurry!

Roasted Asparagus with Parmesan Cheese

1 bunch medium-sized asparagus, 25-30 stalks, cleaned and trimmed
1 tablespoon olive oil
salt and pepper, to taste
½ lemon, juiced
½ cup grated Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 425°.

On a baking sheet, toss the asparagus with the olive oil until well coated. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast for 17 minutes.

Remove asparagus from the oven. Squeeze half lemon on top, and sprinkle with cheese. With tongs, toss well to coat evenly. Return pan to oven, and continue to roast for 5-7 minutes, or until cheese is fully melted, and beginning to brown. Enjoy!


Adrienne Kane is a writer and photographer. She is the author of a memoir, Cooking and Screaming, and the food blog, nosheteria.com 

What is your favorite way to prepare asparagus? Chime in below!

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See all of Adrienne's posts here 

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