August 17, 2018

Tasteful

By Jan Kenney

Stalking Asparagus

Nothing says springtime to me more than fresh asparagus. My parents had an amazing asparagus plot in their backyard and we made sure that we always planned a visit to their house when they came ripe.

I, personally, cannot abide canned asparagus or if it has been cooked too long. For me, it needs to still have just a bit of crunch left or it gets kind of slimy. So be careful to check often when you cook it.

Usually, we prefer to roast them and top with a little butter. But, if eating them ‘plain’ is not enough, this recipe makes a nice side dish or salad.

Lemon Orzo with Asparagus

By Joanna Cismaru

Dressing

1 lemon zested

juice from 1 lemon

3 cloves garlic minced

salt and pepper to taste

1/4 cup olive oil

For the orzo

1 lb asparagus

2 cups chicken broth low sodium

2 cups water

1 tsp salt

1/4 tsp turmeric

1 1/2 cup dry orzo pasta

1/4 cup fresh Parsley chopped

To make the dressing, place the lemon zest, juice, garlic, salt and pepper in a deep medium bowl. Add oil and whisk until it emulsifies a bit. Set aside.

Snap the end pieces off the asparagus and lay the asparagus stalks in a baking dish (9×13 inch). Pour boiling water over the asparagus (just enough to cover it), cover dish with plastic wrap and let sit until the water is warm to the touch. Drain water and cut the asparagus stalks into 2 inch pieces.

Place the chicken broth and water in a large pot and bring to a boil. Add the salt and turmeric and bring back to a boil. Add the orzo and cook until tender, about 10 minutes.

Drain orzo, but do not rinse it. Place the hot orzo in a large bowl, add the asparagus and parsley. Whisk the dressing if needed and pour it over the salad. Mix well.

Top with butter if preferred.

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