5 Ingredients or Fewer

Landmark Asparagus, or How I Learned to Love Green Vegetables

May 11, 2011
Author Notes

I used to hate green vegetables. Nearly every night featured some kind of pitched battle between the Kid and Peas. Or the Kid and Green Beans. Or Broccoli. And let's not even talk about Spinach. Looking back, I realize the reason for that was that my family used to boil everything to death. And then mash it. Usually with margarine. About the only green vegetable I would eat were lima beans, primarily to annoy my mother, who despised them. Anyway, one evening she came home with a recipe for asparagus given to her by the nice lady around the corner who went to the same hairdresser. Vegetables and I have gotten along famously ever since. To the best of my recollection (with a garnish or two added) here's that landmark recipe. —wssmom

  • Serves 4 as a side dish
  • 1 1/2 pounds asparagus, woody ends snapped off, reserving two tips for garnish
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons shredded Parmesan cheese
  • 1 hard-cooked egg, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon minced red bell pepper
In This Recipe
  1. Drop the asparagus into a pan of rapidly boiling salted water and cook for four minutes, or until crisp-tender. or tender-crisp. Remove and let dry on a rack over a layer of paper towels. Come to think of it, you could probably just dry them on the paper towels.
  2. While the asparagus is cooking, put the butter in a small pan, turn up the heat and let it get really brown, almost black.
  3. While the butter is browning, mince the two reserved tips of the asparagus and set aside with the minced red bell pepper.
  4. Put the asparagus in a serving dish, pour the browned butter over it, sprinkle with the Parmesan cheese, strew the egg artfully about, garnish with the minced asparagus and red bell pepper and serve forth.

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