How to Cook Asparagus
If your entree is like the star performer of your meal, then your side dishes are the supporting characters. But no matter how good your star is, you won't have a good show without interesting supporting characters, right? What does this mean when it comes to your meal? It means that same old boring steamed broccoli isn't going to cut it this time. But what can you choose instead? Learn how to cook asparagus, and your meal will be a sure-fire hit every night.

One thing that makes asparagus such a great supporting character is that its flavors pair well with just about every protein. Whether you're spotlighting beef, chicken or pork, you can count on asparagus to play a great supporting role. This recipe helps retain the natural tender-crisp texture of asparagus by roasting it in oil instead of boiling it.

Hi, I'm Miranda Valentine with the, and today, I'm gonna show you how to make roasted asparagus. So I have our ingredients all laid out here. We have 4 pounds of asparagus washed, trimmed and peeled. We also have a quarter teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper, 1 teaspoon of salt and 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Now, by roasting the asparagus in the olive oil instead of boiling in water really allows you to retain that tender, crisp quality which we all love. You can serve low-calorie side dish with beef, chicken or fish. So to start, we are going to assemble our little asparagus roasted goodness over here. Now, because of the amount and the size of asparagus we have in the pans that I have, I'm going to divide it into 2 pans. If you have a baking dish that's large enough to accommodate all of this then by all means use it or, you know, break it up as needed. So let's start. We want this to be able to fit in, you know, a single layer along the bottom. Okay. So let's assemble this. Beautiful! And then our next one, now behind me my oven has preheated to 450 degrees. That's the nice roasting temperature that we're gonna use today. So just continue. Okay, so now that we have this all assembled. Here comes the fun part, we're gonna toss them with our olive oil, our salt, and our pepper. So, because we dip it up between 2, we just wanna kind of drizzle half over here and half over here and this is so easy because we're just gonna tough it right in the dish that we're-- we're roasting in so it makes it so super simple. Now, let's do our salt on both and then follow with the pepper. Now, I'm gonna just get in there and I'm going to toss it with my fingers, but if you don't wanna do that you're welcome to, you know, grab 2 spoons, you can do tongs whatever like, but I find it easy just get on in there with my hands and toss it. Make sure that everything is properly coated. And you really wanna make sure that everything has an equal amount of olive oil on it because we're not gonna be covering this we roast it. We wanna make sure that the asparagus spears don't dry out. Look at that. Just gorgeous, just goes on, so easy. It's amazing how olive oil can really go so far just a little bit. Now, we wipe our hands and we're gonna put it in the oven for 15 to 18 minutes until tender. Remember that is 450 degrees and will come back then. Okay, so it's been 15 minutes and I took our asparagus out of the oven and look how gorgeously. This is roasted. It still has that super vibrant, bright green color. We have like a little yummy crispy browning happening on some parts. It's fork tender. If you're ever not sure if something is cooked, just pop it in, and if it's for tender, meaning literally the fork just like slide right in. You know you're good to go. That was so easy. This is so low calorie, totally healthy, completely delicious. It can be one of your favorite side dishes for chicken, fish, or beef. There you have it. That's how you roast asparagus.
What You'll Need
  • 4   pounds (1/2-inch-thick) asparagus, trimmed and peeled

  • 2   tablespoons melted butter or olive oil

  • 1   teaspoon salt

  • 1/4  teaspoon freshly ground pepper

Step By Step
Heat oven to 450 degree F. Toss asparagus, butter, salt and pepper on a jelly-roll pan; arrange in a single layer. Roast 15 to 18 minutes until tender. Makes 8 servings.

Not only do both of these asparagus recipes provide a nice change from your normal vegetable side dish, but they're both quick and easy, too, not to mention healthy. With such nutrients as Calcium, Magnesium and Phosphorous, learning how to cook asparagus means you'll have a great supporting side dish no matter what your main course.
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