Asparagus and Garlic

Summer is nearly here! If you shop at the supermarket, the seasonality might only get noticed by the slightly favourable price tags; if you visit local weekend produce market, however, it would be impossible to miss the sight of bundles and bundles of green and purple shoots popping out in front of you in every stall you walk by.

Asparagus is a delicate and irresistible mix – juicy bites, tender texture, fleeting nutty flavours and a hint of sweetness. In this recipe, the asparagus are lightly blanched then quickly sautéed – one of the best ways to bring out its naturally interesting character.

I like to look for the thin ones – they are tender and can be cooked evenly and quickly. If the stalks are thick, it’s better to cut them into half, blanch the thicker ends first and add the spear ends later to avoid over-cooking the spears. It takes only seconds to blanch, so having a colander ready beforehand could save some frantic searching and over-cooked asparagus. You also need a hot frying pan to sautee everything quickly to preserve the flavour, texture and nutrition of this wonderful vegetable.

  • 1 bunch purple asparagus
  • 2 -3 cloves of garlic, crushed and finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
Boil a pot of water. Blanch the asparagus for about 30 seconds. Take out as soon as they turn bright green. Cool under running water for about 10 seconds, drain well.

Heat the frying pan on high heat, add the oil, lightly sauté the garlic for about 10 seconds until fragrant.

Add the asparagus, toss for about 15 seconds to coated with the oil and the garlic; sprinkle tiny amount of salt, take out and serve.