Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Asparagus with Parmesan Crust

Daniel loves asparagus. Me...not so much. Typically when I make asparagus I will coat it with extra virgin olive oil, sea salt, black pepper, and lots of minced garlic and then stick it in the oven to crisp up. The thinner the asparagus the better...they are like crispy french fries.

This go around, since I was trying to make our pork dinner this past Sunday extra special for Daniel, I thought I would try out a new way. I think I prefer my way above, but this way was pretty darn good as well. I figure, if I eat it and thank its decent, then in reality, it must be pretty delicious. I could only find the thicker asparagus this time but for the most part I got the same effect as my way. Daniel loved it and commented during dinner just how much he loves asparagus.

Asparagus with Parmesan Crust~
Source: allrecipes.com

1 lb. thin asparagus
1 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
1 oz. shaved Parmesan cheese (I used probably close to 1/3 cup of the cheese right out of the green container)
freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar ( I used a balsamic vinaigrette)

1.) Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. (I baked ours at 375 since they were thicker.)
2.) Place asparagus on a baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil, and toss to coat. Arrange asparagus spears in a single layer. Spread Parmesan cheese over asparagus, and season with freshly ground black pepper. 
3.) Bake 12 to 15 minutes in the preheated oven, until cheese is melted and asparagus is tender but crisp. Serve immediately on warm plates, sprinkling with balsamic vinegar to taste. 

Since we all know I can't help but not follow the directions 100%, I had to do mine a little different. I coated ours with the olive oil, black pepper, a good sprinkle of sea salt, and then I drizzled it with the vinaigrette. I tossed it all around to evenly coat each spear, and then I sprinkled the cheese on top and baked away. I think the dish turned out just lovely! I love how they tend to get brown and crispy.