Meals are an experience at our household, whether you’re hands on in the kitchen while the festivities begin, enjoying a glass of wine while we stir up some fun, or awed by the serenade of cuisine set at the dinner table. Tastes, smells, and sites to be seen as your senses dance with excitement.
I enjoy cooking and nothing makes me happier than seeing the fresh produce I’ve grown on my farm turned into delicious recipes for everyone to enjoy! Early spring asparagus is so exquisite I normally take a simplistic approach to recipes not to overshadow the fresh flavor. I invited Chef Natalie to my kitchen to prepare two asparagus recipe’s to accompany our dinner.
You should always use the best ingredients that are made available to you and that fits your budget. It’s a simple tip but one that makes a huge difference. We used fresh thick cut bacon from our neighbors farm to flavor and accompany our home-grown asparagus.
Bacon Wrapped Asparagus
- 1 1/2 lbs. Fresh asparagus spears
- 5 – 8 Pieces of fresh-cut bacon
- 2 T Olive oil
- * Black pepper to taste
Clean the asparagus and break off the end pieces. The stem will naturally break at the tender spots and you can discard the end pieces for compost or use to flavor soups. Lightly brush the asparagus with olive oil and pepper to taste. Spiral wrap 2 – 3 pieces of asparagus with bacon. You can secure the pieces with a tooth pick before grilling if needed. Place the asparagus on the grill and cook until bacon is crisp and spears are tender.
Creamy Baked Asparagus
- 1 lb. Fresh asparagus spears
1/4 Cup Peppercorn Ranch Dressing
1/2 Cup Grated Smoked Gouda Cheese
12 Ritz Crackers, coarsely crushed (about 1/2 cup)
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Clean asparagus spears, remove ends, and blanch in water for 2 -3 minutes. The asparagus should be bright green and still crisp. Drain and place in a baking dish. Add dressing and toss to coat, then sprinkle crushed crackers and top with smoked gouda cheese. You can substitute the gouda for parmesan or cheddar cheese if you have that on hand, but trust me the gouda is good. Bake in the oven for 10 – 12 minutes until the top is lightly golden and crisped. This recipe was modified from the original on KraftFoods.com.