Photo by Joseph De Leo; styled by Mariya Yufest
Remember flower bombing neighbors’ front doors to welcome the coming of May? Daffodils, tulips, even an early batch of lilacs might have made the cut for the sunshine-spreading campaign. Would we sound too jaded if we admitted to preferring a bouquet of fresh asparagus wrapped in salty prosciutto to a vase full of petaled blooms? This recipe’s simple celebration of the green stems’ fleeting season might have you rethinking your floral order, too.
After a quick dip in boiling water, the asparagus is submerged in an ice bath to stop the cooking process and preserve its bright emerald hue. The stalks are then parceled into individual servings and wrapped in thin sheets of prosciutto, which work to simultaneously corral and season the asparagus. Balance the rich, grassy notes of the tidy bundles with a shot of fresh lemon juice or a swipe of Dijon mustard. A dusting of Parmesan completes the preparation, and in ten minutes (tops!), a perfectly packaged side dish will emerge from the oven.
24 stalks of asparagus, trimmed
4 thin slices of prosciutto
Freshly ground pepper
2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
1 lemon, quartered
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I've always been a fan of asparagus. My parents used to grow it in their garden, and it would be one of the first greens to arrive in the spring. We used to pick the stalks and eat them right in the yard. Now that I'm all grown up, I like to eat asparagus with a bottle of Alsatian Riesling or Austrian Grüner Veltliner. These wines are perfect matches to the herbaceous and vibrant green flavors of asparagus. They also have the body and acidity to be great matches for the prosciutto and cheese. If you're feeling festive or serving this dish as a starter or hors d'oeuvre, drink some bubbly.
2010 Hiedler Grüner Veltliner Löss, Austria
2010 Roland Schmitt Riesling Glintzberg, Alsace
2008 Antech Crémant de Limoux Cuvée Eugenie, France
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What would you serve with these lanky stems? Share your menu ideas in the comments section below!
Like this post? See the Easy Everyday topic from last week: Herb-Roasted Sweet Potato Skins.