Garlicky Pan-Fried Asparagus
Asparagus even non-asparagus lovers will like
My best friend always hated asparagus. She thought it was a horrid, evil vegetable that existed only to make her meal times traumatic. Granted, the majority of her asparagus experiences had been with the canned variety, which admittedly does seem to be another species of asparagus altogether. Still, I have never had this veggie be more mouth-watering, nor has any of my friends and family, than in this recipe.
As an added bonus, this side dish is also very easy to make. The hardest part is determining when the asparagus is the right sort of crisp-cooked for your taste.
Notes on this Recipe
Although fresh garlic is always better, jarred minced garlic can be used to good effect. I normally just use about a tablespoon full.
The red pepper can be added to taste as well, depending on how spicy you like your veggies. Black pepper can also be added for extra flavor.
Make sure you purchase fresh, quality asparagus. Ideally, the stalks should be straight, with tight, just tinged purple leaves on the tip. Drooping stalks or tips that are deep green are not as fresh and will not impart the best taste or cook as well. If they are all you can find (as they sometimes are at my grocery), they will still deliver a decent dish, so don't despair if you can't find ideal asparagus.
Once you choose your asparagus, you will need to prepare it. Break off the tough ends by holding a stalk at the middle and at the thick end, then bend it, letting it break naturally. You can break all the stalks like that, or use the broken one as a guide to cut the others.
- 1 bunch Fresh asparagus
- 2-3 cloves Garlic, minced
- 1 tsp Red pepper flakes
- 2 Tbsp Butter or margarine
- 1/3 cup Parmesan or Parmesan-Asiago cheese, grated
- Salt, to taste
- Melt butter in large skillet. Add garlic, salt, and red pepper flakes. Saute for about 30 seconds.
- Add asparagus in single layer. Cook for about 4-5 minutes, then turn asparagus. Cook for about 4-5 minutes more.
- Sprinkle asparagus with grated cheese, and let cook another 2-3 minutes. Serve.