We’ve been overdosing on asparagus recently. We buy at least 3 pounds every week at the farmers markets, and sometimes have even stopped at a local store or two for some of their local asparagus (yes, Whole Foods and PCC have local asparagus now too!).
We’ve been serving it roasted, Parmesan crusted, and planked. But last night I picked up some fresh tarragon and dressed those tasty little spears with a simple bit of dressing. As an added bonus, I threw some of the dressing on chicken, and later, some spinach salad.
This recipe comes from the pages of Edible Seattle magazine, a fantastic resource for Puget Sound locavores.
A few words about today’s ingredients: To make this recipe even more local, you can substitute apple cider vinegar from Rockridge Orchards for the champagne vinegar. Tarragon can be grown here, so head on out to your local garden center or plant sale and pick up a plant. Our cream was from Golden Glen Creamery.
Asparagus with Creamy Tarragon Dressing, from Edible Seattle
- 1 pound fresh asparagus
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 2 Tbsp fresh tarragon
- Salt and pepper
- 2 Tbsp cream
- 2Tbsp champagne vinegar
- 2 tsp Dijon mustard
1. Cut off the woody ends of the asparagus stalks.
2. Mince the tarragon.
3. In a large pot of boiling water, cook the asparagus for 5 minutes, then remove immediately to a bowl of ice water to stop the cooking process.
4. In a medium bowl, mix the Dijon mustard with the champagne vinegar until combined.
5. Add the tarragon and the salt and pepper.
6. While whisking constantly, add the olive oil in a slow, steady stream to emulsify the dressing (this gives the dressing a creamy flavor and texture).
7. Whisk in the cream.
8. Serve the asparagus spears tossed in the dressing.
Chef’s Notes: I’ve never been a huge fan of tarragon, though after this recipe I think I have changed my mind. Tarragon smells divine and reminds me of spring rolls. (Odd, I know, but that’s what it smells like.) We pan fried some chicken in rendered mangalitsa lard and drizzled the dressing over the chicken as well. I doubled the dressing recipe and ended up with enough dressing for a full pound of asparagus, two servings of chicken, and at least 4 days worth of salads. I prefer my asparagus slightly undercooked so that it still has a nice snap when you bite into it. I find that this helps prevent the thick ends of the stalks from being tough and woody. You could also slice the asparagus into smaller pieces for a more traditional salad look.
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