How to Steam Asparagus
Those bundles of green spears at the supermarket are one of the first signs of spring, and discovering how to steam asparagus is a great way to experience the season's bounty.

Nowadays, asparagus is available year-round in grocery stores; however, there is still a distinct growing season (in the Midwest and East, the vegetable's peak harvest month is April and early May). There are three main varieties of asparagus: green (the most common), white (milder in flavor than green, and slightly more fibrous), and purple (deeply flavored and very tender).

Steaming asparagus is easy, but it's important to understand a few things about the vegetable before you begin. The stems can be woody, so it's crucial to remove the tough, fibrous ends. Simply bend the asparagus spear at the bottom third until it snaps; discard the shorter, broken end (or use it to make a rich-flavored vegetable broth). Using a vegetable peeler on the tough part of the stalk also works well.

Steamed asparagus is perfect on it's on as a side dish, but it's also delicious tossed in pasta, a stir-fry, or risotto. Asparagus is high in dietary fiber, vitamin K, folate and iron.

Transcript
-Hi everyone I'm Judith. Well, today, we'll be making steamed asparagus with lemon butter sauce, a fantastic hot and indulgent asparagus dish. So, what you'll need is 2 pounds of fresh asparagus, a quarter cup of water, 4 egg yolks, 2 tablespoons of lemon juice, 1 cup of butter softened, 1/2 teaspoon of dried tarragon. Okay, so first of all, with out fresh asparagus, we have trimmed off the bottom rough parts, so they are a little bit smaller now and all those rough parts are done. Now, in a baking dish, you get either large baking dish or 2 small ones. We're gonna add our asparagus to fit in there. We'll get our second one too, and we're gonna cover it with water. I use half in each baking dish, fantastic. Now, with our plastic wrap, we're just gonna cover this, get some heavy duty plastic wrap. We're gonna cover it all at one corner. We're gonna leave the corner a little bit open because we're gonna steam these. We're gonna stream then in the microwave, a very quick and easy way to do it. So, leave a little corner for some hour there. So, we'll do the same thing to this baking dish. Cover our asparagus, so that it will steam and we'll just keep gonna keep on little corner open there. Fantastic, so they're gonna go in the microwave now and we're gonna let those stream for about 6 to 7 minutes. Then, we can set them aside and keep them warm. So, other asparagus are steaming. Let's move on to our lemon and butter sauce. So, in a heavy bottom saucepan, we're just gonna put it to a medium heat, and we're gonna combine our egg yolks and our lemon juice and on a low heat, we're gonna keep whisking those 2 ingredients together. Once those 2 ingredients are combined, we're now gonna add in our butter. So, in there goes and let that melt down. So, we wanna stir that until it melts down and we're gonna combine with the other 2 ingredients. That should take about 6 minutes it's thickened. So, we've been stirring our lemon butter sauce continuously for the last 6 minutes and it's thickened up nicely now and that is just gonna be a great sauce to go on top of the asparagus. So, let's take it off the heat. And the last thing we wanna do is add in our tarragon. Tarragon gives a beautiful smell and just combined so well with the butter. What a sauce for our asparagus. Set that aside. Keep it warm in 2 minutes. Now, we have our steamed asparagus out from the microwave. So, we'll just uncover the whole of that and that's perfect, crisp, tender, just how we want it. So, we will plate that up now. Just put them along there, and this is a fantastic dish as well to go along with any meat to fish and especially with our lemon butter sauce, combines great with fish. So, the same with this side and plate that up, huh, smelling good. Alright, so, last but not the least of course, we can just spread that lemon butter sauce on top of our asparagus like so. That just looks beautiful and there you have it. That is just one gorgeous asparagus dish. That is how make steamed asparagus with lemon butter sauce.
What You'll Need
  • 2   pounds fresh asparagus

  • 1/4  cup water

  • 4   egg yolks

  • 2   tablespoons lemon juice

  • 1   cup butter, softened

  • 1/2  teaspoon dried tarragon


Step By Step
1
Snap off tough ends of asparagus. Place asparagus in an 11 x 7 x 1-1/2-inch baking dish. Add water. Cover dish tightly with heavy-duty plastic wrap, and fold back a small corner to let steam escape. Microwave on high for 6 to 7 minutes or until crisp tender. Set aside and keep warm.
2
Combine egg yolks and lemon juice in a heavy-bottom saucepan. Add butter, and cook over low heat, stirring constantly until butter is melted and sauce is thickened, for approximately 6 minutes.
3
Remove from heat; stir in tarragon. Serve with steamed asparagus.
4
Sauce may be prepared ahead and reheated in microwave.


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