Today I want to tell you about one of my very favorite vendors at the University District Farmers Market – Mair Farm-Taki. They take a break from the markets during the winter and early spring and come April, I’m looking for their narrow booth every week. This past weekend, I was finally rewarded. Mair Farm-Taki is back! They have some of the most unique and interesting items throughout the year. I’ve gotten fresh and candied ginger, umeboshi paste, taro root, yuzu, and fresh horseradish.
It bears repeating because fresh horseradish is really so much better than its jarred supermarket counterpart. Even though I like prepared horseradish and use it several times a year, there’s always something a bit… preservative-y about the supermarket stuff. There’s a flavor, underneath the heat that I just don’t like. So when we found fresh horseradish root a few years ago, we snapped it up and made our own horseradish. It was delicious! Sweet, hot, and pure – fresh horseradish is a thing of beauty. It is also incredibly simple to make. Simply peel the outer root and grate it using a microplane. You might want to do this in a well ventilated area because fresh horseradish can be hot and a little irritating to the eyes and nose. Mix the horseradish with just a little more white or Champagne vinegar than it takes to thoroughly moisten (you want a little extra vinegar in there to keep the heat in the horseradish). Fresh horseradish will keep in the fridge for a couple of weeks.
- 1 bunch asparagus, bottom third peeled, cut into 1 inch pieces
- 4 oz morels, washed and roughly chopped
- Olive oil
- 3/4 cup half and half, milk, or soymilk (if you want to keep with the vegan theme)
- 2 tsp fresh horseradish
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1 tsp cornstarch dissolved in 2 tsp water
- Preheat the oven to 400.
- Toss the asparagus in olive oil to coat.
- Roast for 5-7 minutes, depending on thickness.
- Toss the morels in oil and add to the asparagus mixture.
- Roast for another 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Meanwhile, heat the half and half (or milk) over medium heat.
- Add the horseradish, garlic, oregano, salt, and pepper and bring the mixture to a slow boil, stirring regularly. The mixture will start to thicken slightly.
- Mix in the cornstarch and water, cook for another 3-4 minutes, or until thick.
- Serve over the asparagus and morel mixture.
Notes: The original recipe called for portabella mushrooms and basil, but unfortunately we had neither. While I’m sure the texture of the portabellas would have been even better, meaty and firm, the flavor of the morels was divine. Roasting caramelizes the mushrooms a bit, giving them a slight crisp as well as an intense flavor. Be careful when cooking the sauce after adding the cornstarch mixture. The sauce will go from watery to thick in the space of about 15 seconds.
- Roasted Asparagus with Hazelnuts and Parmesan Finally, asparagus season is back in the Pacific Northwest. Though...
- Asparagus with Balsamic Rhubarb Reduction Asparagus is finally back at the farmers markets. At least...
- Brussels Sprouts with Pancetta-Horseradish Cream On Twitter this morning, just about everyone was longing for...
- Damn you Orangette!!! I don’t like mushrooms. In fact, I pretty much categorically...