Our kitchen garden cook reveals her favourite recipes with asparagus.
“I always think it must be such a disappointment when someone first decides to grow asparagus and has to wait until year three to harvest the delicious spears. Luckily, I’ve already paid my dues, so I’m looking forward to at least two strong months of enjoying asparagus from the kitchen garden”
Whole roasted sea bass with grilled asparagus, mango curry cream and poppy seeds (serves 4)
Handful fresh mint
Handful fresh basil
Handful fresh parsley
Juice and zest of 1 lemon
1 red chilli, chopped
100ml olive oil
2 large sea bass, gutted
700g asparagus (or 2 bundles
from a supermarket)
Half a mango
200ml coconut milk
200ml double cream
1tbspn curry powder
Juice of 1 lime
1tspn soy sauce
1tbspn poppy seeds
Edible flowers for decoration
Preheat your oven to 180˚C/350˚F/gas mark 4. Take a pestle and mortar and smash the mint, basil, parsley, chopped chilli, lemon juice and zest together, then pour in the olive oil and add seasoning. Alternatively, put all the ingredients into a food processor and pulse until they become a coarse paste.
Take the sea bass out of the refrigerator, cover the inside with the paste and then spread it over the outer skin as well, adding a little extra olive oil if needed. Scatter with salt flakes and then place on an oiled roasting tray and cook for about 20 minutes. Meanwhile, put the asparagus onto a roasting dish and drizzle olive oil over it, then put it in the oven, with the fish, for about six minutes.
Make the mango curry cream for the asparagus by placing blending the mango, coconut milk, double cream, curry powder, lime juice and soy sauce with a stick blender until the mixture is smooth.
Serve the seabass and asparagus together, with the mango cream drizzled over the top of the asparagus and scattered with the poppy seeds and edible flowers.
More ways with asparagus
Asparagus, egg and fresh-anchovy salad
For a starter or light lunch, take 6 asparagus stalks per person and cook them, drizzled in olive oil, in a moderate oven. For each person, boil 1 egg and set aside 3 fresh anchovies. Once cooked, slice the asparagus into chunks and mix it with the chopped egg and anchovies. Serve on a bed of salad leaves, decorated with micro herbs, such as the shiso used in the photograph.
Asparagus gnocchi with butter and Parmesan
Boil 600g potatoes. In a separate pan, steam or boil 300g asparagus and blend to a paste. Put the potatoes through a ricer, add the puréed asparagus and mix well. Next, sprinkle enough plain flour into the mixture until it becomes malleable and then tip the dough onto a work surface and cut into small pieces. Drop each one into boiling water for a few minutes (they’ll float when done) and serve with butter, fresh basil and Parmesan.