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Steamed Asparagus & Serving Sauces

Ahh, the joy of simply steamed seasonal asparagus, ideal with just a little butter and lemon juice or served with a delicious sauce.

Steam your asparagus over a pan of boiling water for anywhere between two and five minutes (depending on thickness of stem). You will know it’s ready when you can poke a fork into it and there’s still a little give.

Here you’ll find a classic recipe for Hollandaise and a tempting Romesco sauce. If you don’t fancy the idea of making a sauce, then we can thoroughly recommend a fabulous peanut satay mix from Foxes, in our world food section, that just needs a little boiling water and a quick reduction – it’s thick, delicious, nutty and perfect with asparagus.

You can either serve your sauce of choice in a dipping bowl on the side or, as we like to do, pour a generous amount on top of your asparagus spears.

 

Hollandaise Sauce

35 minutes to prepare
Serves 2
Print Recipe

Ingredients

  • 250ml white wine vinegar
  • 4 peppercorns
  • A handful of tarragon stalks
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 2 spoons of lemon juice
  • 220g butter

Instructions

  1. Reduce 250ml white wine vinegar by half with 4 peppercorns and a small handful of tarragon stalks.
  2. Boil a large pan of water, then reduce to a simmer.
  3. Using a whisk, beat together the yolks and 2 tsp of the reduced wine vinegar in a heatproof bowl that fits snugly over the pan.
  4. Critical step: Beat vigorously until the mixture forms a foam, but make sure that it doesn’t get too hot.
  5. To prevent the sauce from overheating, take it on and off the heat while you whisk, scraping around the sides with a spatula.
  6. Whisk in a small ladle of the warmed butter, a little at a time, then return the bowl over a gentle heat to cook a little more.
  7. Remove from the heat again and whisk in another ladle of butter. Repeat until all the butter is incorporated and you have a texture as thick as mayonnaise.
  8. If you're nervous about curdling, just take this process really slowly.
  9. At the end, whisk in a little lemon juice with the seasoning to taste plus a little warm water from the pan if the mixture is a little thick.

Romesco Sauce

10 minutes to prepare
Serves 4
Print Recipe

Ingredients

  • 200g jar of roasted red peppers
  • 100g toasted almonds
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1tbsp sherry vinegar
  • 1tsp smoked paprika
  • 50ml olive oil

Instructions

  1. Drain the jar of peppers thoroughly and add to a blender
  2. Add the toasted almonds, garlic, sherry vinegar and paprika and whizz until broken down
  3. Slowly add in the olive oil but be careful not to overblend. You want this to be texturised
  4. Season to taste and serve
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