My family loves asparagus. We can have them anytime whether it be as steamed asparagus for breakfast, in a sandwich for lunch or snacks, in a salad for dinner, or even in a smoothie. Here in Singapore, you can easily find asparagus in any supermarket almost the whole year round. Singapore sources this wonderful veggie from Thailand, Mexico, New Zealand and Australia.
During our recent visit to Munich, Germany, we were able to try a different variety called spargel. One striking difference between spargel and the asparagus that we’ve come to love is color: spargel is white. Compared to the green variety, spargel has a milder taste. It was in season during our trip so it was in the menu of most of the restaurants. When we strolled around the street stalls in Marienplatz, we saw a lot of fresh HUGE white asparagus.
Asparagus are very nutritious. In addition to their high fiber and protein content (essential for digestion and immune system), asparagus are also known to be anti-cancer. As a home cook, one great thing about this beautiful vegetable is that they are so easy to prepare and cook. The best and simplest preparation method comprises of 2 simple steps: (1) drizzle them with EVOO and (2) season with salt and pepper. After that, they are ready to be grilled in your pan. So, whenever they are available, I usually buy more so I can use them in several dishes.
One small problem that you’ll encounter when buying more than your immediate need is how to keep the rest fresh. Well, I’ve learned a good technique from the very witty host of Good Eats, Mr. Alton Brown: treat asparagus like flowers. Cut the bottom of the stalk for about an inch, put them in jar or container with enough water (around 1-2”) and cover them with loose plastic bag to keep the moisture around them. Then you can place them in your fridge. It’s easy, isn’t it? I’ve tried it myself and it worked! My family could still taste the freshness of the asparagus even though it had been in my fridge for a week.