Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Baked Asparagus with Balsamic Butter Sauce

This next one is my second favorite Asparagus recipe yet! 

This was ridiculously simple and you can find the original recipe here. It's called Baked Asparagus with Balsamic Butter Sauce. It's buttery, salty and slightly tangy. I think this would go with a lot of things, but especially fish and steaks! Trevor made us a nice meal of pan fried tenderloins. I'm so lucky to be with a man who cooks!

Final Product!
Trevor made tenderloins with a gorgonzola cream sauce, yum!

Wash and trim asparagus.
Coat with cooking spray and salt and pepper.
Bake at 400 degrees for 12 minutes.

Melt 2 T of butter and add in 1 T of Soy Sauce and 1t of Balsamic Vinegar.
Pour over asparagus and serve!

This will probably be my last Asparagus post. I wish I had more time, but I'm headed to Austin, Texas for a work conference for the rest of April. I still have Cabbage dishes to make too! Maybe I'll have to do a "catch up" month. Look for the next vegetable announcement in May! I have a few in mind, but I would welcome suggestions.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Crispy Parmesan Asparagus Sticks

Alrighty, you have to post the times when the recipe doesn't work out so well... right?! 

Well here it is! They seemed like such a good idea and I have no doubt this is chef error. The basic idea was to put the asparagus through an egg wash and then in flour, panko and parmesan cheese before throwing them in the oven. I guess I must have done it wrong because it was just a floury goop that wouldn't stick to the asparagus. After battling with six of them, I gave up. They turned out alright, but not great and pretty tasteless. I liked most of the other asparagus recipes significantly better.

Trevor made a fantastic shrimp and mushroom dish and that definitely stole the dinner show. That recipe went in the recycling and I'm movin' on to different recipes!

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Gnocchi with Asparagus and Prosciutto (Semi Homemade)

Semi Homemade... Sandra Lee style! 

This post might be sort of cheating. I had leftover prosciutto and asparagus from my last post and thought they would be great additions to my first gnocchi taste. I bought these pre-made gnocchi and an Artichoke Pesto from World Market (Cost Plus... whatever you want to call it). My mom raves about gnocchi so I thought I'd give it a go. 

This was VERY easy and I have a hard time calling it "cooking". I guess I did boil water. I loved the gnocchi and plan to experiment some more with it. The Artichoke Pesto wasn't my favorite though. It tasted like marinated artichoke hearts which I'm just not a fan of all the citrus in those. So in the style of Sandra Lee on the Food Network... I present you Gnocchi with Asparagus and Prosciutto Semi Homemade!

Finished Product

Gnocchi, sauce, cut one inch pieces of asparagus
and chopped prosciutto

Add Gnocchi and asparagus to boiling water and cook for 2-3 minutes.
Drain and stir in sauce and prosciutto... done!

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Prosciutto Wrapped Asparagus

I've been "iffy" about Asparagus so far. It's been ok, but frankly has tasted the same and it's very vegetable-y flavored. Anyone else feel like things taste "vegetable-y"? I know it's obvious, but I think non-vegetable lovers can relate. Well this recipe changed Asparagus for me. Our friend Erica showed me this recipe from allrecipes.com. It was super easy and delicious! Oh was it good. I only made three "packets" and Trevor ended up eating two before I even had a chance to say "we're splitting the third!" Mental note: make more next time!

Finished product... yummy!

Starting ingredients, asparagus washed and trimmed

Spread one piece of prosciutto with cream cheese.
I used whipped so it would be easier to spread.
I think a flavored one would be fun to try.
I sprinkled a little garlic powder on too... garlic never hurts!

Roll up and place on greased pan.
A reviewer had suggested spraying the tops of the
spears too so they wouldn't burn.
Bake at 450 for about 15 minutes.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Leah's Asparagus and Bacon and Orzo, Oh My!

I made this recipe up. (Pause for dramatic ohh-ing and ahh-ing... or not, that's ok!).  I basically combined the little knowledge I have of all three and a little bit of a white sauce knowledge and bam, it's pasta time! You can describe it by my two favorite words, easy and customizable. It turned out pretty good, but you can see that there is a lot of room for changes. I would consider adding mushrooms and/or parmesan cheese next time. If you have ideas, please let me know!

Leah's Asparagus and Bacon and Orzo, Oh My!

1/2 bunch of asparagus
4 slices of bacon
3/4 cup dry orzo pasta
1 T butter
1 T flour
1/2 cup of fat free milk
1/2 t each of garlic powder, onion powder and salt

Fry up bacon

Chop bacon and asparagus in one-two inch pieces

A roux is a traditional thickening ingredient for a lot of sauces,
especially french sauces. I learned this simple white sauce as the base
for my Mom's delicious Mac and Cheese.

Melt butter in small sauce pan over medium heat.
Stir in the flour.

Add the milk and stir constantly over medium heat,
you'll be able to watch it thicken.

Bring water to a boil and stir in orzo.
When the orzo has about two minutes left,
drop in the asparagus.

Stir everything together and add seasonings.


Wednesday, April 4, 2012

April is Asparagus Month!

As promised, April is Asparagus month!

I must admit, I'm only partially excited for this one. So far the other vegetables have seemed so versatile that there have been so many things to try. In fact, I have at least two more cabbage dishes I want to make. But Asparagus I'm having a hard time coming up with different ways to prepare it. I'm hoping that family, friends and readers send recipes to help! 

When I've been telling people that April is Asparagus month the overwhelming response has been... "good luck with your pee!" The boyfriend even calls them "Stinky Pee Sticks". How appetizing. Since I haven't eaten asparagus, I am not familiar with this smell, so I did some research. A quick Wikipedia search pulled up some interesting research on the topic, check it out here (scroll down to "Urine Effects".) Turns out that while Asparagus causes all human's pee to turn "odorous" not all humans have the ability to smell it. Please, oh please let me not have the ability to smell it! 

Fingers crossed!

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