As a child I’d never even heard of asparagus let alone tried it. Something as exotic as asparagus never reached a small Staffordshire village in the 1970s! It took owning a campervan to encounter this wonderful vegetable. Back in 2007 we took our new Devon Sundowner across Germany and to Poland. It was late May and early June and driving through Germany we couldn’t miss the fields of asparagus and the roadside asparagus stalls.
Trying a new food can be daunting but I like to give things a go. At a farmer’s market in Hamelin I found a stall selling asparagus and decided to take the plunge. Not really knowing what was the right amount to buy and not knowing how to ask for half a kilo let alone a quarter in German, I came away with a kilo of green asparagus! We lived like kings, eating asparagus for three nights running and I quickly learnt different ways to cook it, adding it to risotto, flash-frying it in butter and roasting it. My love affair with this vegetable had begun. In Germany that year we tried white asparagus as well as green, which is grown beneath the soil.
Nowadays I can’t wait for May when the short asparagus season begins. Our first asparagus-based meal this year was a simple pasta dish. The asparagus was flash-fried in olive oil with garlic and black pepper in my RidgeMonkey grill pan and served with cooked pasta, sprinkled with some grated hard Italian cheese. We had a bottle of tasty Scottish beer to wash it down. What a Spring-time treat!