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06/20/2019

~ Amazingly-Lemony and Perfectly-Grilled Asparagus ~

IMG_2221Asparagus, served hot off the grill grids, drizzled with a bit of lemon-infused EVOO and white balsamic vinaigrette, is one of my favorite Summer side-dishes.  Name it -- grilled steak, chicken or seafood, it plays well with them all.  Interestingly, I sometimes serve it as an hors d'oeuvre too -- it pairs perfectly with melon wrapped in prosciutto.  There's just something downright delightful about picking up a medium-to-fat, crunch-tender asparagus spear in my fingertips, politely swishing it a pucker-up, creamy, lemon sauce and savoring the lightly-charred flavor. 

Just eat.  It's too simple for words, hence this short post.

IMG_2243Grilling asparagus is so simple, it barely requires writing a recipe.  Just toss the trimmed stalks in some lemon-infused extra-virgin olive oil (just enough to lightly-coat), season the spears with some freshly-ground sea salt and a nice peppercorn blend, then, place them directly on the hottest part of the grill grids for a couple very short minutes -- about 3-4 minutes for medium-thick asparagus, 5-6 minutes for thicker ones.  No fuss, no muss, no prep.  Just grill and eat.

IMG_2196For two appetizer servings:

4  ounces, trimmed, medium-thick asparagus spears (12 spears)

1  tablespoon lemon-infused extra-virgin olive oil, high-quality store-bought or made from scratch in the home kitchen

15 grinds sea salt

15 grinds peppercorn blend

IMG_2207 IMG_2207~ Step 1 (optional but highly recommended by me).  To make 1/4 cup of my favorite creamy, lemon sauce, mix together 4 tablespoons mayonnaise and 1 tablespoon lemon-infused EVOO & white-balsamic vinaigrette.  Set aside.

IMG_2185 IMG_2185 IMG_2185 IMG_2185 IMG_2185~Step 2.  After trimming the asparagus (see Cook's Note below), line them up, side-by-side, in a single layer on a plate.  Slowly drizzle the lemon-infused extra-virgin olive oil over the surface.  Using a pastry brush, paint the asparagus with the EVOO to coat.  Sprinkle a generous grinding of sea salt and peppercorn blend over the surface.  Set aside.

IMG_2184 IMG_2184 IMG_2184 IMG_2184~Step 3.  Heat an outdoor gas grill over high setting, or, place a grill pan that's been sprayed with no-stick cooking spray over high heat on stovetop.  Place asparagus, side-by-side, slightly apart, in a single layer across the hot grill grids.  Grill, using tongs to turn only once, until asparagus is lightly charred and cooked to desired degree of doneness, about 1 1/2-2 minutes per side (or until desired degree of doneness is reached).  Remove from heat and serve ASAP.

Remove from grill or grill pan & serve ASAP:

IMG_2230Amazingly-Lemony and Perfectly-Grilled Asparagus:  Recipe yields instructions to grill medium-thick fresh asparagus spears.

Special Equipment List:  cutting board; chef's knife; pastry brush; outdoor gas grill or indoor stovetop grill pan; tongs

IMG_1895Cook's Note: When it comes to cooking asparagus via any method, freshness always matters more than thickness, and, even the best asparagus recipes are subject to failure if this delicate vegetable isn't treated with care. ~ Choosing, Prepping and Storing Amazing Asparagus ~ is a must read for anyone who's looking to get acquainted with this seasonal but very versatile vegetable.

"We are all in this food world together." ~ Melanie Preschutti

(Recipe, Commentary and Photos courtesy of Melanie's Kitchen/Copyright 2019)

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