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Sunday, March 03, 2013

Spargel with Cheese Sauce

spargel white asparagus cheese sauce

I had these dreamy white spears for the first time about 6 years ago during a visit to Germany where they enjoy an exalted status. It was boiled in water and served with a simple cheese sauce. It was best when eaten steaming warm and fresh off the stove, tender enough to cut with a fork, and not at all chewy and woody.

Asparagus, a favorite, often just roasted and eaten right away, is usually green when grown above ground thanks to photosynthesis. White asparagus (Spargel) is cultivated underground/covered to prevent the green coloration. They tend to be less woody when mature than their green cousins.

spargel white asparagus

Every once in a while we come across white asparagus here in the local markets and can't resist buying them. This time, I boiled it for a good 20-25 minutes in salted water to get it fork tender. (Gently peel the skin before boiling.) And served it with a quick cheese sauce, sprinkled with parsley and ground black pepper.

For the cheese sauce:  (recipe from BBC)
flour
butter
milk
cheese

I usually don't measure precisely for this type of sauce. Sometimes, I make a roux of sorts by heating butter in the pan and adding the flour and cooking to make a paste; then, slowly add in some milk while stirring constantly. Then, add in grated cheese - like Colby Jack, Cheddar, even a bit of Parmesan mixed in...

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