The Flat Possum Gazette  

Test Kitchen

Courtesy of the Road-Kill Press

ASPARAGUS WITH BREADCRUMBS AND PARMESAN CHEESE

Bill,

As you know, this is a great season for asparagus, not ours because the damn deer have eaten it all, but from the grocery store. This is a one way to enliven an otherwise mundane veggie.

1.  Boil your asparagus in a skillet in salted water till done.  By done, I mean it is still semi-crisp when punched with a table fork, not limp. I also sprinkle in a little Lawry's seasoned salt and a grind or two of black pepper in the water. ( I assume you have trimmed the tough, woody ends off the asparagus. If not, you will give your teeth an unexpected workout at the table. I have even tried trimming the asparagus with a vegetable peeler; a total waste of time.  Just cut off the tough ends.)

2.  Melt two or three tablespoons of unsalted butter in a skillet and throw in a double handful of breadcrumbs that you have made yourself. Just toss pieces of stale bread into a food processor or blender for a few seconds, whizz till the crumbs are the consistency you want.  Keep them in a baggie in the freezer, they will keep there for months. (When I say "stale bread", I mean bread that has not yet seen the green blanket of growth that so often visits our bread box.)

3.  Saute the breadcrumbs for a few minutes in the hot butter.

4.  Place the cooked asparagus in a serving bowl, sprinkle the buttered breadcrumbs on top and then finish it off with some grated Parmesan cheese.

5. I popped the finished dish back in the oven for a minute or two to help bring the cheese and breadcrumbs together.
6.  If you want to add ten miles an hour to this dish, cook the following with the asparagus:  red bell pepper cut into strips, sliced celery, and sliced Jalapeno peppers. Sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds before laying on the breadcrumbs and Parmesan.
6.  You could vary this dish by using your favorite, Brussels Sprouts, instead of asparagus.  Also, vary the cheese by using cheddar or Monterey Jack.

Dad

 

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