White asparagus is one of the real signs of spring and definitely one of the most welcome! Here are our best tips for cooking them to perfection.
Basic recipe – white asparagus
- 6 asparagus spears, extra thick – AAA
- 10 g salt
- 30 g sugar
- 15 g butter
- 1/4 lemon
- 250 ml water
Peel the asparagus carefully with a potato peeler – it’s important that you remove all the skin. The asparagus is delicate, so lay it down on your chopping board, holding it gently by the tip whilst you peel it (the tip does not require peeling). Trim approximately 3 cm off the ends (these are often dry and wooden). Mix sugar, salt, butter, water and the lemon juice in a vaccuum bag. Add the asparagus and seal the bag. Cook sous-vide or in a steam oven until the asparagus is cooked, but still crunchy; approximately 30 minutes at 85°C. If you do not have a steam oven or sous-vide, mix the ingredients in a wide, shallow saucepan. Add the asparagus and heat gently (do not boil!) allowing the asparagus to cook for approximately 30 minutes.
Serve your asparagus warm or cold – here we’ve shared two classical sauce recipes that work really well with your perfectly cooked asparagus.
Lemon mayonnaise – perfect with cold asparagus
- 1 Egg yolk
- 1 tsp Dijon
- 1 tsp Lemon juice
- 200 ml Cooking oil
Whisk the egg yolk with the mustard and lemon juice in a bowl. Add the oil in a think stream whilst whisking continually. Season with salt, and adjust with more mustard and lemon juice if needed. Transferring the mayo to a piping bag it makes it easy to create a beautiful plate with little dabs of mayo in between asparagus pieces. Decorate with vendace roe and cress!
Hollandaise – a classic with asparagus
- 200 g Butter
- 3 Egg yolks
- 3 tbsp Water
- 1/2 Lemon
Melt the butter slowly and keep it warm at approximately 50°C. Bring a small saucepan of water to the boil, then reduce the heat until the water is simmering. Whisk egg yolks and water frothy in a stainless steel bowl. Place the bowl over the simmering water and whisk for a few minutes until the mixture has thickened somewhat. Add the butter slowly whilst whisking; but avoid adding the water that forms under the melted butter. Season with lemon and salt. Serve immediately!