Saturday, 3 May 2014

Springtime Stalking

Asparagi Bianchi e Patate con Dragoncello, Senape & Arancia con Bietola Rossa Saltata

White Asparagus & Potatoes in Tarragon, Mustard & Orange with Wilted Red Baby Chard


 Not being the greatest of fans of the typical and traditional white asparagus recipes here in Germany, I decided to try something a little different... and I have to say that the result turned out to be pretty terrific!

The hint of citrus from the orange zest, the pungent anise-like tarragon and the nutmeg-scented baby red chard all came together wonderfully with the mild potatoes... 

Here are the ingredients for this lovely Vegetarian dish. This was 1 handful of asparagus per person- to be incredibly precise, that meant in this case 11 stalks , but of course it all depends on how large they are. These were small- I prefer them that way and they are much quicker and easier to cook. 5-6 small potatoes. 2 good handfuls of red baby chard. 1 teaspoon of mustard- this was Italian, but you can use whichever you prefer. 2 sprigs of tarragon and a little orange zest... and that's all you need!


 This was ultra simple to prepare- as usual!

First, peel the potatoes and make sure they are all the same size- meaning, cut the larger ones so that the pieces are as small as the little ones IF they are different sizes... if not- you're already ahead of the game! Pop them into a saucepan with just enough salted water to cover them and boil them for 5-6 minutes initially.

In the meantime, peel the asparagus stalks and cut them in half, then after the potatoes have been boiling for 6 minutes or so, pop them into the saucepan on top so that they sit there and steam whilst the potatoes boil. Continue boiling for a further 5-6 minutes until tender.


Whilst the potatoes and asparagus are bubbling away, rinse the card off and shake it dry. In a frying pan, heat around 2 teaspoons of olive oil and when it is hot, add the chard and stir briskly- careful! It may hiss and spit a little! Season with salt, pepper and nutmeg and remove from the heat after just 2-3 minutes at the most.


Next, drain the potatoes and asparagus and transfer them to a hot frying pan with a little olive oil, the finely sliced lemon zest and the finely chopped tarragon. I cut 2 small strips of zest from the orange and chopped them up finely- that is plenty for one portion like this.

Sautée everything gently together and add the teaspoon of mustard whilst everything is nice and hot. Season with salt and pepper, and serve as soon as the potatoes and asparagus begin to turn lightly golden.


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