Yotam Ottolenghi’s asparagus recipes | Life and elegance

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Most asparagus dishes are simple to organize (that is no artichoke or broad bean) and fast to prepare dinner (longer cooking makes it go gray and lose its physique). The value you pay for this on the spot veg, although, is that it must be super-fresh. As Jane Grigson noticed: “Asparagus needs to be eaten the day it is picked. Even asparagus by first-class post has lost its finer flavour.” Realistically, most of us don’t stay by an asparagus area, so have to increase Grigson’s one-day rule. Even so, the precept is evident: for this delicate vegetable, the brisker the higher.

Asparagus with pine nut and sourdough crumbs (pictured above)

Please don’t be delay by the anchovies on this, even in case you don’t like them. There are solely 2 fillets, they usually add a splendidly deep, savoury flavour; there’s nothing fishy in regards to the finish product, I promise. If you’re not satisfied and would slightly go away them out, enhance the salt barely. Serve with meat, fish or as a part of a spring meze; or, for a summery starter, with a poached egg.

Prep 5 min
Cook 20 min
Serves 4

30g crustless sourdough bread
30g pine nuts
2 anchovy fillets, drained and finely chopped
Flaked sea salt and black pepper
25g unsalted butter
400g asparagus, woody ends trimmed
1 tbsp olive oil
1 garlic clove, peeled and crushed
10g basil leaves, finely shredded
½ tsp every finely grated lemon zest and juice

Heat the oven to 220C/425F/gasoline 7. Blitz the sourdough in a meals processor to high-quality crumbs, then pulse a number of occasions with the pine nuts, anchovies, a beneficiant pinch of flaked sea salt and loads of pepper, till all the things is finely chopped.

Put a small frying pan on a medium-high warmth with the butter and, as soon as it begins to foam, fry the crumbs for 2 to a few minutes, stirring continuously, till golden brown and crisp. Tip the crumbs on to a plate and go away to chill.

In a medium bowl, combine the asparagus with 2 teaspoons of oil, the garlic, a quarter-teaspoon of flaked sea salt and grind of pepper. Spread out the spears on an oven tray lined with baking paper and roast for eight to 10 minutes, till delicate and beginning to brown. Remove from the oven and go away someplace heat.

In a small bowl, combine the basil with a teaspoon of oil, the lemon zest and juice, and a pinch of flaked sea salt.

Sprinkle all however a tablespoon of the crumb combine on a big platter or between 4 particular person plates. Top with the asparagus, then spoon over the basil and lemon salsa, and end with a closing sprinkling of crumbs.

Soft-boiled egg with avocado, chorizo and asparagus

All-day breakfast: Yotam Ottolenghi’s soft-boiled egg with avocado, chorizo and asparagus.

All-day breakfast: Yotam Ottolenghi’s soft-boiled egg with avocado, chorizo and asparagus. Photograph: Louise Hagger for the Guardian

Play round with this egg-in-a-cup dish, relying on what you may have round: sliced cherry tomatoes are addition, for instance, as is grated cheese or a drizzle of truffle oil. Omit the chorizo, in case you like, to make it vegetarian. Serve with toasted bread.

Prep 5 min
Cook 15 min
Serves 4

70g cooking chorizo, skinned and damaged into 2cm chunks
4 massive eggs, at room temperature
8 asparagus spears, woody ends trimmed and lower into 6cm-long items
2 ripe avocados, stoned and flesh scooped out
1 tbsp olive oil
2 tsp lemon juice
Flaked sea salt and black pepper
80g Greek-style yoghurt
5g parsley leaves, finely chopped

Put a small frying pan on a medium-high warmth and, as soon as scorching, fry the chorizo for 3 to 4 minutes, stirring to interrupt up the chunks, till cooked by and crisp. Take off the warmth and go away to chill.

Bring a small saucepan of water to a boil, then flip down the warmth to medium, decrease within the eggs and prepare dinner for 4 minutes. Add the asparagus to the identical pan (with the eggs nonetheless in there), prepare dinner for one more 2 minutes, then drain and put each eggs and asparagus in a small bowl stuffed with chilly water. Run below the chilly faucet for a minute, to cease the cooking course of.

Put the avocado in a separate small bowl and mash with a fork till clean. Add the oil, lemon juice and 1/2 a teaspoon of salt, and blend effectively. Divide this combination between 4 small glasses, high with first the yoghurt after which the asparagus items, and season with a pinch of salt. Carefully peel the eggs, put 1 into every of the glasses, then scatter over the chorizo crumbs and parsley. Add grind of pepper and one other pinch of salt, and serve.

Kale and grilled asparagus salad

Seeded spears: Yotam Ottolenghi’s kale and grilled asparagus salad.

Seeded spears: Yotam Ottolenghi’s kale and grilled asparagus salad. Photograph: Louise Hagger for the Guardian

There’s just a little little bit of massaging and marinating concerned right here, however you are able to do that effectively forward of time, if want be. Just don’t combine all the things collectively till the final minute.

Prep 5 min
Cook 35 min
Serves 4-6

30g sunflower seeds
30g pumpkin seeds
1½ tsp maple syrup
Salt and black pepper
250g kale, stems discarded, leaves torn into roughly 4-5cm items
3 tbsp olive oil
1½ tbsp white-wine vinegar
2 tsp wholegrain mustard
500g asparagus, woody ends trimmed
120g frozen shelled edamame, defrosted
10g tarragon leaves, roughly chopped
5g dill, roughly chopped

Heat the oven to 160C/320F/gasoline 2½. Mix each seeds with 1/2 a teaspoon of maple syrup, an 8th of a teaspoon of salt and grind of pepper, then unfold out on a small oven tray lined with baking paper. Cook within the oven for 12 minutes, till the seeds are golden brown, then put aside for about 20 minutes, throughout which period they may clump collectively and crisp up as they cool. Once cool, break the candied seeds into 2-3cm items.

Put the kale in a big bowl with the remaining teaspoon of maple syrup, 2 tablespoons of oil, the vinegar, mustard and a quarter-teaspoon of salt. Using your fingers, combine collectively and therapeutic massage the kale for a couple of minute, till it softens and takes on the flavours of the marinade, then put aside for not less than 1/2 an hour (or as much as 4 hours, if you wish to get forward).

Warm a tablespoon of oil in a big frying pan on a medium-high warmth and, when scorching, add the asparagus and an 8th of a teaspoon of salt, and fry for six minutes, turning commonly so it begins to brown and soften. Leave to chill, then lower on an angle into 4cm-long items.

To serve, toss the edamame and herbs into the kale, then unfold out on a big platter. Top with the asparagus and candied seeds, and serve without delay.

  • Food styling: Emily Kydd. Prop styling: Jennifer Kay

Yotam Ottolenghi from theguardian.com

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