Asparagus season is in full swing. Here are “8 Asparagus Facts” that we hope you will find helpful when it comes to harvesting, storing and just general information about asparagus.
1. Asparagus is a member of the Lily family.
2. Asparagus has no fat, contains no cholesterol and is low in sodium.
3. Asparagus has the potential to grow quickly. In ideal conditions an asparagus spear can grow 10 inches in a day.
4. The asparagus plant needs to establish a healthy crown before harvesting. Do not harvest your asparagus the first two years after planting.
5. Prime asparagus season is in spring from February to June with April being the most active harvest month in the northern hemisphere.
6. There are three types of asparagus. 1. Green which is what most people buy in the store. 2. White is green asparagus that has been denied light while growing so the chlorophyll never developed and is less bitter. 3. Purple asparagus has a high sugar and low fiber content. The purple color comes from a phytochemical. This is the same deep-purplish blue pigment found in blueberries.
7. When storing asparagus do not wash asparagus or never soak it. Instead, trim the ends of the fresh asparagus and stand them upright in a jar with an inch of water. Cover the asparagus with a plastic bag and store spears in the refrigerator for no more than to two days for best use.
8. Learn how to cut and prepare asparagus with the video below.
Asparagus Video Transcript:
Today we are going to show you how to grill asparagus. Grilled asparagus is one of my favorite things to do in the summer time. It’s really simple to do, there’s a little trick where to cut the asparagus when you bring it home from the store. You take the asparagus and you take it like this and you go like that. That tells you were the bad part is. This is the really woody part of the asparagus.
After you do one of them like that, you can take the rest of your asparagus and line it up to where you did that one. You should have a very good idea where to cut the asparagus. We use a cook’s knife to do this. We have the asparagus cut.
The next step is place olive oil on the asparagus. Just toss the olive oil with the asparagus. I like using a little squeeze bottle like this, I keep it in my kitchen right by the oven. I keep olive oil and canola oil for different uses when I am cooking. Olive oil for flavor, canola oil whenever you are using high heat skillet cooking.
We are just going to coat the asparagus, about two tablespoons per bunch of asparagus. Salt and pepper, we have coarse salt and pepper mixed up ready to go in a bowl here. I like to keep that by my stove. I don’t like to use salt and pepper shakers; I like to know how much I am using when I am doing it. We are just going to sprinkle a little bit of that on here.
We are going to toss the asparagus to coat the olive oil evenly on the asparagus. This is ready for grilling now. This is pretty thick asparagus; I would stay on a five hundred degree grill, you are going to put this on the grill so the grates go this way and you want asparagus go this way so it does not fall through the grates. Toss it on the grill; it will probably take about no more than sixty seconds to cook. You get the thinner asparagus maybe thirty seconds at most. You want to keep it crunchy. That is how you prep asparagus.
End of Asparagus Video Transcript.
For more information about asparagus visit www.asparagus.org.