Make Ahead

Smoky Pickled Asparagus

April  8, 2010
1 Ratings
  • Serves a bunch
Author Notes

I love all things pickled and I'm always looking for new ingredients to add to my list. The asparagus is perfect - its crunchiness mellows into a tender bite without going limp while marinating. These spears are simply trimmed, then soaked in a smoked paprika-laced vinegar bath for a few hours until they are smoky, very (very) tangy and a little bit addictive. - notlazy.rustic. —lifeaswecookit

Test Kitchen Notes

To begin with, this recipe couldn’t be easier -- just put a few things on the stove and prep your asparagus and shallots while they simmer. Then leave them alone for a while and, when you come back, you have something tasty waiting for you! I love that the asparagus stays crisp; it is tart and just the right amount of smoky. These spears are great chopped into a salad, as a finger snack, or with a cheese or charcuterie tray -- but I think where they will truly be the belle of the ball is at the head of the line at our next Jazz Brunch Bloody Mary Buffet. I also am planning to use the shallots and smoky vinegar in a vinaigrette. A success all around! - aargersi —The Editors

What You'll Need
  • 2 cups white wine vinegar
  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 bunch thin asparagus spears (about 1 1/4 pounds)
  • 1 medium shallot, peeled, thinly sliced and separated into rings
  1. In small saucepot, whisk together vinegar, garlic, salt, sugar and paprika until sugar and salt have dissolved. Over high heat, bring mixture to a boil; let boil 1 minute.
  2. Meanwhile, trim bottom inch from asparagus spears. Place spears in a resealable container or baking dish (I use an 8" pan). Top with sliced shallots.
  3. Pour hot vinegar mixture over asparagus, carefully adjusting asparagus to make sure they're mostly covered (if not completely).
  4. Let sit uncovered at room temperature 3 hours, stirring occasionally. Store, covered, in pickling liquid in the fridge.
Contest Entries

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • EmilyNunn
  • aargersi
  • mrslarkin
  • gluttonforlife
  • wanderash

9 Reviews

EmilyNunn April 23, 2010
Yes, beautiful and very alluring: will make.
aargersi April 21, 2010
I polished of the rest of the asparagus last night (yum!) and then I used the vinegar and shallots to make a vinaigrette with lemon, olive oil, oregano and honey - also yum - don't waste the vinegar! Tasty all around!!!!
lifeaswecookit April 22, 2010
that's a great idea - i love the thought of adding honey to the brine. i'm glad you enjoyed the asparagus!
mom's K. April 18, 2010
Looks beautiful.... can't wait to try it.
mrslarkin April 12, 2010
yum! I will try this!
gluttonforlife April 9, 2010
Gorgeous! And a great figure-saving snack, I might add (although seems like they would go so well with cheese)...
lifeaswecookit April 9, 2010
thank you - and i bet you're right about the cheese. i think they would also be great as a cocktail garnish...not very figure-saving either.
wanderash April 9, 2010
ooohh, i am going to try this one! it looks great!
lifeaswecookit April 9, 2010
thank you!