Blanching is a process that quickly cooks and cools vegetables to retain their bright color and texture. The lower stems of mature asparagus will likely have a tougher outer bark. A vegetable peeler works quite well to trim the bark away from the tender center.
Prep time: 5 min
Cook time: 3 min
Serves: 2 - 4
3 quart saucepan
Tongs or a slotted spoon
Bowl of ice water
- 1 bunch fresh asparagus, washed and trimmed
- 6 Tbsp kosher salt
- 1 quart water
- 1 quart ice water
- Bring salted water to a rapid boil.
- Add asparagus, cook for 3 minutes.
- Carefully remove with tongs or a slotted spoon.
- Immediately submerge in ice water to stop the cooking process.
- Remove from ice water into colander to drain excess water.
- Slice on the bias into 2 inch sections.
- Reheat immediately before serving by steaming or sautéing for one minute (or putting into microwave for 20 seconds).
Things to remember
- For best results, don’t overcrowd your pot, as this will reduce the temperature of your water; instead, cook in batches
- Have a bowl of ice water nearby to instantly stop the cooking process
- For more mature asparagus, use a vegetable peeler to trim the bark
- Slicing on the bias (on an angle) helps retain the long slender appearance of the vegetable