Friday, June 5, 2009
Twilight at 10 PM...when the mosquitos come out!
When the sun goes down it's time to make asparagus pickles!
Our fresh asparagus is so good you can eat it raw. And since it's never touched by anything but rain water you can eat it right out of the garden. Lot's of people like it grilled on the BBQ with seafood or chicken and a simple oil/herb dressing before you grill is simple to do.
Steaming is good too and I like a honey mustard vinaigrette on top. Try this with chilled asparagus for a lovely summer side dish.
Don't over cook it! Steam or grill for about 6 minutes, depending on the thickness of the stalks.
I've been having a hard time keeping up with mine and some of the stalks got a bit ahead of me. Still nice and tender and good to eat, but not as attractive as they should be in the market. So I made some hot and spicy asparagus pickles. I like to make pickles because it's something I can do with a simple hot water bath canner.
I make my brine with salt, vinegar and water and then I add the flavors I want with the asparagus. This time I used a southwestern style mix of garlic, red pepper flakes, chives , fresh oregano sprigs and cilantro seeds.
If you live near a farmer's market you can probably find asparagus now. Buy enough to eat fresh and about 4 or 5 pounds to pickle. Then serve your pickles as a summer treat along with olives or fresh tomato slices or cut up in a mediteranian style salad.
Drop me a comment if you'd like the recipe.