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Fresh white asparagus is more common in grocery stores or a farmer's market than it used to be, but it's not always easy to find. If you can't find fresh white asparagus, you may be able to get your hands on white asparagus in a jar or can.
What can you do with white asparagus in a jar? Well...you can make an easy, delicious, and elegant side dish with it. Let me show you how!
What is White Asparagus?
White asparagus, similar to the Belgian endive, is grown underground under mounds of soil to keep light from reaching it. No photosynthesis occurs without the light of day, so the spears remain white.
The white asparagus is more fibrous than the regular green asparagus, and therefore requires more peeling due to its tough outer layer. It also has a milder taste and more delicate flavor than the green variety, with a slight bitterness to it.
White asparagus is highly treasured in Europe, and becoming more popular in the United States.
Germany especially love their white asparagus. They actually refer to their German white asparagus as "white gold."
The white asparagus season is roughly mid-April to early summer, around the end of June. So it definitely has a very short season and I'm always excited to see any asparagus herald the arrival of spring!
I am thrilled to share an easy recipe using jarred white asparagus which you will absolutely love! This recipe is inspired by and adapted from the fantastic book "365 Easy Italian Recipes" by Rick Marzullo O'Connell.
Why You Will LOVE This Delicious Recipe
You will absolutely love this recipe for the following reasons:
- It's SUPER SIMPLE! All you have to do is drain the white asparagus from a can or jar. No vegetable peeler is needed and no breaking off woody ends to prep the asparagus as it's ready to go!
- There are a number of ways to cook white asparagus from a jar, but a quick broil with cheese and melted butter has got to be one of the BEST ways to prepare this!
Here are the key ingredients that you will need to make this easy and elegant side dish:
- White asparagus stalks (jarred or canned)
- Salt to taste
- Pepper to taste
- Parmesan cheese
- Cayenne pepper (a pinch is optional and gives a nice heat!)
- Italian parsley as garnish
- Wedge of lemon (optional)
You should be able to find all of these ingredients at your grocery store. I have included Amazon links to both jarred and canned white asparagus in this post so ordering from Amazon is an option. However, purchasing this item on Amazon is very expensive. So, it's best to search for jarred or canned white asparagus at your local grocer.
Please gather your ingredients and let's take 5 or so minutes to make this delicious white asparagus recipe!
Instructions To Make This White Asparagus Side Dish Recipe
Begin by preheating your broiler.
Next, drain the asparagus from the jar or can then place the asparagus on a baking sheet or roasting pan that is broiler safe.
Dot the asparagus with small pieces of butter, then sprinkle the freshly grated cheese on top. Add a little salt and freshly ground pepper.
Place under the broiler from between 3-4 minutes or until the cheese melts and turns a lovely shade of golden brown. You'll want to keep a close eye on this so that the dish doesn't start to burn.
The last step is to remove from the oven, sprinkle a pinch of cayenne if you like, then garnish with Italian parsley. Squeeze some lemon juice over with a wedge of lemon if desired!
The dish is now ready to serve!
How To Serve This White Asparagus Side Dish
This delicious side dish with a unique and delicate flavour is best served warmed, right after removing it from your oven.
The tender white variety asparagus spears with a luscious buttery sauce topped with golden brown melted Parmesan is the perfect side dish to accompany your favorite main course dishes. I love to serve mine with Veal Parmigiana, Ribeye Steak, and Baby Back Ribs.
This dish is elegant enough to include as part of your Easter dinner, or another special occasion such as Mother's Day. But, it's also simple enough to indulge in at any meal.
I very much hope that next time you see a jar or can of white asparagus, that you'll snatch it up and make this wonderful dish!
A printable recipe card can be found below. If you make this dish and love it, I would be honored if you could give it a 5 star rating with your comments!
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Easy And Elegant White Asparagus Side Dish
- baking sheet or roasting pan must be broiler safe
- 12 oz jarred White Asparagus Can use canned as well and amount can be up to 1 lb
- pinch salt to taste
- pinch pepper freshly ground black pepper to taste
- ¼ cup Parmesan cheese freshly grated if possible
- pinch cayenne pepper optional but gives a nice heat!
- 1 ts Italian parsley minced as garnish
- 1 wedge Lemon optional
- Begin by preheating your broiler. Next, drain the asparagus from the jar or can then place the asparagus on a baking sheet or roasting pan that is broiler safe. Dot the asparagus with the small pieces of butter, then sprinkle the freshly grated cheese on top. Add a little salt and freshly ground pepper.
- Place under the broiler from between 3-4 minutes or until the cheese melts and turns a lovely shade of golden brown. You'll want to keep a close eye on this so that the dish doesn't start to burn.
- The last step is to remove from the oven, sprinkle a pinch of cayenne if you like, then garnish with Italian parsley and a squeeze of lemon if desired!