Sunday, March 18, 2012

Absurdly Addictive Asparagus

Serves 4
Recipe from
Husband-Tested in Alice’s Kitchen

This dish was beautiful to behold and tasty too, perfect for a special dinner party.  To be honest, I cheated a little when making this the first time.  I had cooked bacon in the freezer with bacon grease in a bowl in the fridge.  So, instead of following the recipe exactly, I just thawed a few slices of bacon, reheated it in the microwave and crumbled it over the top at the end.  I used 1 Tablespoon of the grease along with the butter listed in the ingredients when sautéing the asparagus.  

4 ounces bacon or pancetta, cut into 3/8 inch to ¼ inch dice
1 Tablespoon unsalted butter
1 pound asparagus, woody ends trimmed and sliced into 2 inch pieces on the bias
1 ¼ cup leek, thinly sliced crosswise (white and pale green parts only)
2 cloves garlic, minced
Zest of one lemon
1 teaspoon fresh orange zest
2 Tablespoons toasted pine nuts or almonds or pecans
1-2 Tablespoon Italian (flat leaf) parsley, chopped
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

In a large non-stick pan, sauté bacon, stirring frequently, over medium heat, until crisp and lightly golden.
Add 1 Tablespoon of butter to pan. Add asparagus pieces and leek and sauté until asparagus is tender crisp, about 3-4 minutes.
Add garlic, lemon and orange zest, toasted pine nuts and parsley and sauté for about 1 minute, until fragrant.
Season to taste with freshly ground pepper and salt and serve immediately.

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