It has finally arrived. Ours came a little later than some of our neighbors'. This is because we mulch heavily (to maintain moisture). The mulch keeps the ground a little cooler, meaning we have to be patient while neighbors are chowing down.
We had hoped, when we moved in, that there was an existing asparagus bed tucked away somewhere on the property that was still producing. No such luck. So, we planted our asparagus bed the first spring we were here- four years ago. Last year was the first year we ate what we wanted and Jamey even planted more, from seed, last spring. Our goal is to be swimming in asparagus in a few years. People strive for lots of different things. Us? We want asparagus. Bad.
The first day we picked there were about seven spears to bring in. They were washed, chopped into 1 inch pieces and sauted with butter and salt. Then, since there weren't enough to eat by themselves, I tossed them into a quiche (in the place of the tomatoes and chard) I was making with some leftover ham from Easter.
Two days later, we had two quart containers in the fridge full of asparagus standing in water. Finally, asparagus for dinner. Our favorite way to make it is this...
Melt 1 tablespoon of butter in a large skillet. Add washed and trimmed (if you weren't able to pick it fresh) asparagus spears. Cover and let cook on medium high to high heat until sizzling. Turn asparagus every couple minutes and turn the heat down a bit if they are getting too brown. Depending on the thickness of your spears, it can take between 10 and 15 minutes for them to cook. They are ready when a sharp knife inserted in a thick spear glides in easily and they are a glorious light brown. Sprinkle sparingly with salt and serve.
I think Sadie said, "More pairgus, please" at least four times. We're actually glad Sam doesn't like asparagus yet- more for us (is that selfish?). Our first fresh vegetable of the year. And it all begins....