ithout a doubt I am a summer-loving individual. I loathe the achy cold and bloom into a somewhat pleasant human being when the sun's shining and, most important, the season's offerings come to fruit. Jersey Royals, spinach, broad beans, the beginnings of tomatoes, asparagus, and more. Food-wise this is my favourite time of year to be alive, and feeling alive is just what I need after a long and dark English winter.
As a child my parents grew asparagus and like my own personal marmite advertising campaign, I recall going through very defined and specific periods of loving and hating it. I think my body has always craved greens but perhaps my mind was not in tune enough to accept that fact! I can say without a doubt that now, like marmite, I have come around to love this green shoot.
These are great hot, but equally good cold, and can be served either on their own or with a nice grain. The first time I made them I prepared a version of Susan's Spring Green Quinoa (without as many veg and with a wine base) and it was a great combination. I have no doubt these these babies would make for some awesome picnic fodder.
The sushi ginger is optional, really, but it's well worth adding a few slivers as it really complements the sesame and vinegar combination. No agave nectar? Just add a pinch of fine sugar instead.
Sesame Ginger Spring Asparagus en Croute
- Preheat the oven to 200 degrees celcius.
- Mix the sesame oil, vinegar, agave nectar, and garlic in a bowl large enough to accomodate the asparagus. Coat the vegetables all over and leave to marinate while you prepare the pastry.
- Cut the pastry horizontally into thirds and brush with a good helping of the melted butter/oil. Roll one piece of asparagus into about ⅓ of the pastry before adding a few grains of salt, a few slivers of ginger, and a drop or ten of the leftover marinade. Continue to roll the pastry, ensuring it's well brushed with butter. Once completely rolled, coat one final time with butter and place on an oven tray. Repeat process with remaining spears.
- Bake for 10-15 minutes, or until crispy and lightly browned.
- Drizzle any leftover marinade over the ends to serve, or leave on the side as an optional extra into which the spears can be dipped.