Celebrate the Best of the Garden with Asparagus
Pop quiz. What is the best garden vegetable of all?
Which comes back year after year with little or no fuss? Which one is so versatile it can be a salad, a soup, a side or an entrée?
Which one is mild and tasty, tender and still strong? Which one takes less than ten minutes to cook to perfection or can just be a sublime snack raw—washed fresh from the field?
Every spring, we are lucky enough to get farm fresh asparagus from a friend who planted a giant section of asparagus in his garden years ago.
It is the blessing for our spring table.
We eat it straight from the garden, with the tender shoots making for a lovely snack.
If you are ever lucky enough to get a hold of purple asparagus, it is sweeter and more tender than our typical Southern green asparagus—a real treat!
If you have some extra room in your garden, think about planting a section of asparagus. It will make springtime meals a joy for years to come.
This week, we got a gift of mixed young asparagus spears including some purple stalks. They were all so tender, we ate many just washed and served with dip. Others we chopped into a salad.
And the final bunch got the best treatment of all—they became a fabulous frittata. So, thank you to our garden fairy—we appreciate every gift you send our way!
Here is my recipe for a splendid supper. It is a remarkably simple five-ingredient frittata that comes together in 10 minutes but makes for a hearty, healthy meal for two. You could also cut the frittata into smaller pieces to use as an appetizer.
Asparagus and Sundried Tomato Frittata
20 or so Fresh Asparagus spears, washed and dried
1 Tablespoon sundried tomatoes, minced
½ teaspoon Old Bay Seasoning
4 large fresh eggs
½ cup grated cheese (you may use the cheese you like best, as long as it is hard enough to grate. I used a bit of sharp cheddar and a bit of parmesan)
Optional: Additional cheese for the top as a garnish
Preheat your broiler. Chop half of the asparagus into ¼ inch long pieces. Take off any tough stems from the rest of the asparagus and save the tender tops. Spray a 10 inch non stick skillet with heat resistant handle with cooking spray. Place the skillet over medium-high heat. Spread the chopped asparagus and the sundried tomatoes over the bottom of the pan. Meanwhile, beat the eggs with the Old Bay Seasoning and 2 Tablespoons of water until the eggs are all yellow and fluffy. Mix the cheese into the eggs and pour mixture over the asparagus and sundried tomatoes in the pan. Let it cook for 30 seconds, then lift up the sides of the eggs and tilt the pan a little to let uncooked eggs run under the edge of the cooked ones. Do this twice, so that the eggs are just beginning to set. Arrange the rest of the asparagus spears on top of the eggs and sprinkle with extra cheese if you have it. Place the pan under the broiler for three to four minutes until the eggs are puffy and golden brown on top. Slide the frittata from the pan to a platter or plates. Serve hot or at room temperature.