“Asparagus with Fresh Herbs & Lemon”

IMG_2574It is finally asparagus season, a month later than usual here in the California foothills, due to our wet, cold weather. Yaaa! We finally had a real winter and lots of rain 👍.

I know there are many blog recipes for asparagus but I couldn’t resist adding another one that is my favorite. It’s the fresh herbs that really make this recipe stand out so it is worth finding fresh tarragon and thyme. It is also a good time to start your own herb garden so you always have fresh herbs handy!

Both thyme and tarragon are very hardy perennial herbs that you can grow in big pots (they like to spread) so consider creating your own little potted herb garden if you don’t have outdoor space. Even a sunny windowsill will work for most herbs.

Once you have scored some fresh tarragon and thyme get yourself a bunch or two (or three) of fresh asparagus (it’s pretty cheap right now in the markets) and treat yourself to a taste of spring. Since fresh asparagus is only available for a short time I like to eat as much as possible while I can.  I actually have an asparagus bed in my garden but it doesn’t produce enough to satisfy me so I end up buying more.

IMG_2552
“Asparagus spears pushing up through the soil”

One last thought on why you should eat asparagus (besides its yumminess):

It is full of good-for-you vitamins and minerals like vitamins A, C, E, K, and B6, as well as folate, iron, copper, calcium, protein, potassium, thiamine and fiber.  Extensive research into asparagus nutrition has resulted in its being ranked among the top fruits and vegetables for the ability to reduce the effect of cell-damaging free radicals. Packed with antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, asparagus has been used as a medicinal vegetable for 2,500 years. With credentials like that who can resist this amazing vegetable?

OK, so the one slight downside might be that after eating asparagus, some people report their urine gives off a strange odor ; but it is completely harmless — it’s produced because of the asparagus sulfur compounds that your body did not absorb.  No biggie, right?

IMG_2564Moving on to the recipe, finally! I just drizzle the fresh asparagus with olive oil, lemon juice and lemon zest, Braggs Liquid Aminos (or soy sauce or tamari) and sprinkle a little garlic powder and the fresh thyme and tarragon, chopped finely.  Finally sprinkle toasted sesame seeds over the top and pop in the oven for 20 minutes or until it’s slightly browned. Here are the details:

RECIPE for ASPARAGUS with Lemon & Herb (2 big servings or 4 small ones)

  • 1 bunch asparagus, washed & tough ends cut off
  • juice of 1/2 lemon
  • zest of 1 whole lemonIMG_2405
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 TBSP olive oil
  • 1 TBSP each: fresh thyme & fresh tarragon (you could use dried herbs in a pinch)
  • 2 tsp sesame seeds (toasted or not)
  • 1/2 – 1 TBSP Braggs Liquid Aminos (or tamari or soy sauce)

DIRECTIONS

  1. Wash & cut tough ends off asparagus spears.
  2. Place in single row on a baking sheet & drizzle olive oil,lemon juice & lemon zest all whisked together over all the spears.
  3. Sprinkle the Braggs or tamari over the asparagus.
  4. Top with the chopped herbs & sesame seeds.
  5. Bake in preheated 400 degree oven for about 20-30 minutes, until tender & slightly roasted.IMG_2573

Serve warm as a side dish, garnished with fresh herbs or top any cooked grain with the spears for a very fresh and healthy welcome to Spring😋IMG_2580

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