The Book Vegetables

16. Grilled Asparagus p.521

the recipe

This was the essence of restraint. One of my big problems with the vegetable recipes in the book is that they tend to go too far and try to do too much. In the process they can lose their way and end up detract from the original flavours of the vegetables. I think you need a pretty compelling reason to add more than salt pepper and butter or oil to summer fresh produce.

In this case grilling the asparagus instead of boiling or steaming it was a revelation. The stalks remained crisp, and took on deep smoky flavours with a hint of sweetness. This is my new favorite technique for asparagus.

The recipe recommends threading the stalks onto bamboo skewers. I didn’t get around to doing that, and instead cooked them on a basket insert for the BBQ. The basket prevented the stalks from falling through the grate, but skewering would have made them easier to get off the grill. Making little asparafts would be a fun project for any kids in attendance, and might make things quicker and more efficient, but I wouldn’t say it’s necessary.

Overall an excellent recipe.


I'm a graduate student in Montreal. I spend most of my time studying drug addiction using brain imaging techniques. I'm also a foodie, exploring the culinary world both in and out of my kitchen.

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