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Blanched asparagus looks very stylish, but there is nothing fancy about this easy cooking technique, making your favorite spring vegetable even more delicious. Here we explain how to blanch asparagus perfectly to enjoy them in salads, pasta or alone.
Need inspiration for the blanched asparagus recipe? Make the best Hollandaise sauce and add a few spears to Alice Springs Chicken. Or try the tasty asparagus salad, loaded with vegetables and with no lettuce leaf in sight. For a quick salad, dress up whole blanched spears with balsamic vinaigrette and a handful of crumbled blue cheese.
Why blanch asparagus?
To start with, blanching makes certain vegetables more tender, tasty, and enjoyable to eat. Add blanched asparagus to a vegetable tray and you probably want to do more. Blanching leaves the asparagus bright green and slightly crisp, but soft enough to bite into when rolled into a sushi roll or sandwich wrap.
Blanching asparagus is also a great way to pre-cook it for another post-cooking method. Roasting asparagus takes half the time and produces better results when you blanch them first.
Asparagus: Thick or Thin Spears?
No matter the size of the asparagus, fresher is always better. Fine pencil-like spears can be hard and woody, if not super fresh; The same goes for giants.
It's best to consider a few other factors when buying asparagus: freshness, appearance, and what recipe you plan on making asparagus.
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How to select the asparagus:
Storage. How are asparagus stored in the store? Unless you buy the freshest fresh asparagus straight from the farm, the asparagus should be stored upright in the produce section, on ice or in a little water, to keep the vegetables hydrated.
Appearance. Look for sturdy, straight lances that are firm, not wrinkled. Asparagus should be bright green with a soft purple hue at the tip. Check the bottom of the cluster to see if the stems are wrinkled, completely dry, or very woody; avoid them if they are.
Finally, inspect the top of the studs. When the tips of the spears start to open, darken, or appear slimy, skip them and look elsewhere.
How to store fresh asparagus at home:
At home, trim the ends with a sharp knife and place the bundle in an inch of cold water inside the refrigerator until you need it. A square bottom cup or pan works great for this.
How to trim the asparagus:
Contrary to popular belief, if you break the asparagus where it breaks naturally, you could be losing precious inches of this highly sought after vegetable.
Instead, cut off the bottom inch or two of the entire stem with a chef's knife. If your studs came together with rubber, hold the band to help you make the cut.
Peeling asparagus: yes or no?
Although it depends on your recipe, sometimes peeling the bottom few inches off very large asparagus spears can even help cook.
In general, you shouldn't have to peel the asparagus to eat every day, but some classic culinary preparations require it.
Small pencil-thin asparagus spears shouldn't need peeling.
How to blanch the asparagus:
- Once you've trimmed the asparagus, you're ready to go. Bring to a boil a Dutch oven or pot filled with an inch or two of salted water. Saltwater spices vegetables beautifully, so don't skimp!
- Fill a large bowl with ice water. If you ran out of ice or someone forgot to fill the trays last night, don't worry. Just spread a clean kitchen towel on the counter.
- Once the water boils, add the asparagus and cover. Cook until crisp and bright green, 3-4 minutes, depending on the size of your asparagus. (Cutting pieces of asparagus and very fine asparagus cook even faster.)
- Using a slotted spoon or tongs, remove the asparagus and immediately immerse the spears in the ice bath to stop the cooking process.
- Let cool for one minute, then remove from the ice bath and pat dry the lances.
Whitening asparagus without ice: remove the asparagus from the boiling water and spread on the dry kitchen towel to cool.
How to blanch asparagus in the microwave:
Baking the asparagus with a microwave is easy and does not heat the kitchen.
- Dampen a few sheets of kitchen paper. Spread them out and place the studs on top of them.
- Roll the asparagus onto the damp towels, then microwave the seam down.
- Microwave on high heat until the asparagus is tender and crisp, about 3 to 4 minutes.
- Remove from the microwave with tweezers and carefully unroll. Dip the asparagus in an ice bath to cool or spread them on a clean kitchen towel.
How to freeze blanched asparagus:
If you're lucky enough to be able to buy asparagus in bulk, you can freeze them for year-round enjoyment. Blanching asparagus to freeze works the same way, except you may need more water and ice.
Once the asparagus has been blanched, cooled, and dried, place the spears or chunks in freezer bags or other containers. Don't forget to tag and date, so you know what you have.
If you want to prevent asparagus sticking while freezing, freeze them beforehand. To quickly freeze the asparagus, spread the blanched asparagus in a single layer on baking sheets. Freeze for 1 to 2 hours, then transfer to freezer bags.
More ways to eat blanched asparagus:
I crudited. Cold vegetable dishes become more edible with tender asparagus spears and your favorite sauce.
Pasta. Chopped asparagus is the perfect pairing with pasta. Try this pasta with asparagus, mushrooms and ham, or a spring pasta.
Eggs. Eggs and asparagus go together, like feathered birds. Poach an egg to serve on a pile of tender asparagus, a little salt and pepper and a drizzle of olive oil. Or add it to a frittata or quiche.
Mr. fried. Fried rice with vegetables for a last minute dinner with absolutely zero complaints.
Blanched asparagus looks very stylish, but there is nothing fancy about this easy cooking technique, making your favorite spring vegetable even more delicious. Here we show you how to blanch asparagus perfectly to enjoy in salads, pasta or alone. Cuisine: American Preparation time: 2 minutes Cook time: 4 minutes Total time: 6 minutes Servings: 6 Calories: 30 kcal
For the salad
- 2 pounds asparagus, trimmed
- 1 tablespoon of optional salt
To blanch the asparagus:
- Fill a large bowl with water and ice. In a saucepan or large pot, boil 1 inch of water and 1 teaspoon of salt. Add asparagus, cover and simmer until bright green and tender and crisp, about 3 to 4 minutes.
- Immediately remove from the boiling water and soak in an ice bath to stop cooking. When completely cold, drain well and pat dry.
Calories :: 30kcal