As you may have encountered from reading this title, it is the season for asparagus.
Asparagus is a spring root found in the northern hemisphere regions, and is high in vitamins. They are made up of 80% water and are low in calories and sodium. Some of the main vitamins included in asparagus are Vitamin A, C, E and F. There is also calcium, pottasium and folate. Folate is one factor that lowers the risk of cancer in females. Funnily enough, asparagus can also be used as a treatment for a hangover. Yes, thats true:)
So, if I have not already convinced you that you should put aside the coli, broccoli and carrot that was soo last season, then please skip this post:)
To cook this amazing specism of a root, you can boil it, fry it, chargrill it, eat it raw or then wrap it in bacon and put it in the oven.. That does sound nice right about now... And have I got a recipe for you!! Yep, I call it Ginger Asparagus Beef Strips :)
The ingredients that are totally reccommended and needed for this awesome, one-time only recipe are :
- 500g beef strips, or then you could get a hunk of meat and cut it in strips on the diagonal.
- a handful of the thinnest (freshest) asparagus you can find
- a piece of fresh ginger
- red onion (any kind really, but red adds colour)
- a lemon
- chile flakes
So, firstly fill a medium sized saucepan halfway with water. Then boil it.
While you wait, cut the asparagus* and meat (if not already cut). *To cut the asparagus, julienne diagonally in 1 to 2 inch strips. Leave the white ends on the end and chuck them in the bin.* Then when the water boils place the asparagus in there and set the timer for two minutes. After the timer goes off, drain it and pour cold water over the asparagus. This technique is called par-boiling, and is used to stop the vegetable from cooking, and is generally done when the vegetable is tender and not fully cooked. Then set the asparagus aside.
Get out your wok, and turn it up to full bloom, poir oil in, and twist the pan so that the oil coats the sides as well as the base. Throw the meat in.
Turn the wok down to a little more than medium temperature, and wait till the meat is just turning brown. While the meat is turning brown, cut the onion like a wizz-machine, then grate half the ginger and lemon.
When the meat is medium rare. Then get out a medium sized bowl, mold aluminium foil into the bowl, and pour the meat as well as the juices onto the foil. ((This is a little trick I learnt so that you just have to heat up the meat with the other ingredients, and not wait till the beans are as soft as a feather and mushy as mud. Then you can easily take out the aluminium and the bowl is as clean as a ... okay, enough with similes)
Now that you have your meat some-what done, and your asparagus also done, now is the time to join them all together is one awesome up-do!
Pour into the wok some oil, the lemon rind and the chile flakes. Swirl them around for a minute on a medium heat plate. Then add the onion and ginger.
Stir this concoction till the onion is caramalised, and not as stiff. Then add the asparagus, and gently fold.
Lastly, add the meat and a tad of cream. (When I say tad, I mean pour a generous amount) Swish it around, and let it simmer for a minute or two.
WHAM, the BEST asparagus recipe in the history of asparagus recipes.