TOY SOLDIERS: Asparagus to the Rescue

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Spring is here but before you go looking for your sunscreen, hat and bottle of Pimms remember to make the most of the season’s first asparagus harvest. Because when it comes to asparagus, nothing compares…

[dropcap]H[/dropcap]eart by heart, step by step, left right left, we’re all gobbled down, like asparagus soldiers…Ok so I may be no Eminem – my rhythm and rhyme being as off as a bad egg – but I do know the best way to prepare eggs. That is, softly poached and served with blanched asparagus soldiers, a squeeze of lemon, a dash of olive oil, salt, pepper and a sprinkling of dill. You can dip the yummy sweet spears into the unctuous rich egg just like you did with egg soldiers as a kid, but this serving suggestion is definitely soldiers for the sophisticated.

Of course pretty much anything tastes good when asparagus is on the menu. Nothing embodies the joys of spring like a floret from our favourite perennial Asparagus officinalis. Sure, an asparagus spring may not overthrow dictatorships or bring democracy to the world, but it brings a smile to the faces of diners across the globe. After all, spring is all about new growth, flower buds and fresh flavours. So what says spring more than an edible bud that is brimming with flavour and fresher than a proverbial daisy?

Now I know there are many of you out there who don’t appreciate this glorious vegetable. I say shame on you. A shame that you’ve probably only tried it boiled to hell or out of a can. Argh! A shame that you haven’t given the sophisticated flavour of asparagus the chance it deserves. A shame that you haven’t tried cooking it for one minute, dunking it in icy cold water and tasting the weirdly beautiful green tender sweetness that is asparagus.

And what better way to relish or give asparagus the second chance it deserves than with a simple dish of asparagus soldiers

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