Last spring we planted an asparagus bed, and it has really taken off. At first we only saw small tips peeping up from the soil, then they shot up to tall spears almost overnight. Now the wispy fern sways in the breeze on long thin stems and will stay around for the summer. Asparagus needs two years growing time before harvesting, so we are still a year away from gathering those tender spears from the garden, something I think about every time I inspect the asparagus bed. Gardening definitely teaches me patience. In the meantime, we have to buy asparagus to satisfy our cravings.
I adapted this asparagus recipe from Cooking Light, and it was a hit with my family. The red onions and almonds are sautéed for just a few minutes in olive oil, then the orange juice and honey go in with the raisins, which plump as they absorb the liquid. The flavor payoff is big for just a small amount of work, and it’s easy enough for a weeknight and elegant enough for guests. I changed up the original recipe and used slivered almonds instead of pine nuts, added a little extra orange juice, and used orange blossom honey.
Now I have to wait a year before I can make this with our homegrown asparagus, but it will be worth the wait.
- 1 pound asparagus, trimmed
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- 1/3 cup sliced red onion
- 2 tablespoons slivered almonds
- 3 tablespoons orange juice
- 3 tablespoons raisins
- 2 teaspoons orange blossom honey
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- Pour about 1 inch of water into the large pan or pot, insert the steamer basket, and bring to a boil. Steam the asparagus until crisp-tender, about 2 minutes. Remove from heat and keep warm.
- In the skillet, warm the olive oil over medium heat. Sauté the onion and almonds until warm and glistening, about 4 minutes. Add the orange juice, raisins, honey, salt, and pepper. Cook until the raisins plump and soften, about 2 minutes. Spoon over the asparagus and serve.
large pan or pot
Use very fresh pencil-thin asparagus for best results.
More Asparagus Recipes
Asparagus Recipes From Other Food Blogs
- Sass & Veracity – Shaved Asparagus and Pecorino Romano Salad
- Gluten-Free Goddess – Asparagus with Maple Tahini Dressing
- The Year in Food – Asparagus and Spring Onion Risotto
- eCurry – Sesame and Balsamic Glazed Asparagus Cranberry Tart
[Disclosure: I am a member of the Cooking Light Bloggers’ Connection.]