Wednesday, March 12, 2014

The Best Asparagus You've Ever Had

Want a "quick 'n easy" yet healthful vegetable dish for your repertoire? Then this is the one.

Start with a clean bunch of vitamin-packed asparagus, perhaps my favorite vegetable of all time. I try not to buy the very thick ones, though. The thinner, the better. Trim off approximately one inch from the bottom and then halve them. Actually, the spear-end should be just a little bit longer, because it will cook faster. Basically, you want to even the score.

Because that's only fair.

Heat your skillet on medium-high heat, melting a heaping tablespoon or two of coconut oil in which your veggies can finally get happy.

Toss. And continue to sauté for about five minutes, depending on the thickness of the stalks. You'll notice they are getting a deeper green.

Now cover the pan and let the steam soften them up just a bit. If it's too dry in there, add about a tablespoon of water.

Next, we add asparagus's best friend. What? You didn't know red peppers and asparagus were the best of buds? Neither did I! Until something magical happened in my kitchen one day. (They were all I had.)

While your asparagus is steaming, cut that pepper into strips and then halve the strips.

Add them to your steamy asparagus. Toss and sauté until the peppers are softened. No cover needed.

And now the moment we've all been waiting for. ::Hello there, preposition at the end of my sentence. No one really cares if you're there right now. Our eyes are focused below.::


Oh, maybe about a half cup of heavy cream will probably do it. But, by all means, if you think it needs more, go for it!! Just add a LITTLE at a TIME.

The cream will do two things.

1) Deglaze the pan so all that yummy, cooked-on veggie goodness will get back in the game.
2) Add richness and flavor, of course!

Remember, add it a little at a time. You're not going for SOUP here. Let each little bit cook into the dish and thicken it before you add more. See how it's bubbling along the edges? Let it do that for a bit and when it begins to take on an orangish tint (from the peppers), it should be getting about thick enough to add a little more cream to another area of the pan.

And because I'm NOT afraid of butter, I usually add a little of that, too, at the end. (Grass-fed is the best.) There's nothing like it for depth of flavor. Salt to taste. (Yes, TASTE your food, people!!)

One bunch of asparagus and one red pepper is enough for my family of six to have one serving (as seen below), which is why I often double it. Everyone ALWAYS wants more!

This is a crowd-pleasing side dish, I promise!!

Do me a favor,...if you know me and have tried mine, if you would LIKE to one day attempt this "recipe," if you DO try it and like it, or if you're just remotely, possibly interested, would you Pin It or Like It or whatever you do with things like this?? (Note: I have all the handy little buttons you might need to the left of this post.) I think more people should eat both asparagus and red pepper, and this is one easy way to get them to do it.

I'm linked up at Real Food Wednesday with Kelly the Kitchen Kop. (It's been a long time...)

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