Monday, April 23, 2012

Garden to Table Challenge: Asparagus

It's Garden to Table Challenge day again! Wow, where did that week go? I wish I could tell you that I've got some great harvest to write about, but all I've got to show for my gardening efforts so far are some spinach seedlings and inch-high peas and onions. With the warm days we've been having, I am holding out hope that some day... perhaps in the distant future... I will produce some food from this new ground I'm working.

In the meantime, I'm still doing my best to make good use of what Mother Nature has to offer. This week: wild asparagus. Picking wild asparagus is an annual tradition around here, and with the warmer days a bit earlier this season, asparagus is already popping up along fence lines.

I've got a fridge full of asparagus spears standing in jars of water, waiting for canning tomorrow. Tonight's dinner was what I'm writing about today though - fish fillets poached in a wine/garlic/butter sauce with roasted parmesan wild asparagus spears alongside.

If I was cooler - and had planned ahead better, I'd have taken a picture. You'll have to use your imagination, but I promise, it was a beautiful meal.

For the asparagus:

Trim 1 lb (ish) asparagus spears. Place them in a shallow baking dish. Toss with a bit of olive oil to coat, sprinkle with salt and pepper. Then sprinkle on about 1/4c. parmesan*. Or a third of a cup... or a half of a cup. I love parmesan. Cover the dish with foil, bake at 400 degrees for about half an hour. Seriously, it's that easy, and it's so good.

*Don't use that grated powdery stuff that comes in the spaghetti aisle. Buy real, grated parmesan. (Or grate some yourself.) It's worth it. I promise.

And in case you're dying for a new, super fast and easy fish recipe:

Tilapia with Wine/Garlic sauce:

Place 6 partially thawed tilapia filets in a shallow baking dish. Put a thin pat of butter on each filet. Drizzle white wine over it all, then squeeze half a lemon over that. Sprinkle with sea salt, dehydrated garlic and dried parsley. Cover with foil, bake about 25 minutes, til it flakes.

So it takes a total of about ten minutes to have this all in the oven. Then you can walk away and feed the baby chickens and turkeys, hoe a row in the garden, and come in just in time to put it on the table with a loaf of bread. Easy peasy.

So there's my Garden to Table Challenge submission for the week. Again, sorry for the lack of pictures. A hungry family sitting down to the dinner table doesn't look kindly upon Mom insisting they all stop eating so she can photograph their plates. I decided to let them eat in peace.

1 comment:

Wendy said...

I don't cook fish nearly enough when it's so easy and good for you! I like your asparagus idea and the cream of asparagus soup as well. I might try making the soup this week. Wish we had some wild asparagus - my paltry amounts won't add up to much!