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Asparagus Milanese


I love fresh asparagus so much that I’m an asparagus “piggie” for the most of spring. One of my very favourite ways of eating it is simply dipped into softly poached egg yolk then rolled in crisp buttery breadcrumbs. I’m salivating merely writing these words.

Blanched, grilled or barbequed, hot, warm or cold, dressed or undressed, as soup, in pasta sauce or risotto, frittata or tart, asparagus everything is served at my table in spring. This year asparagus is cheap and plentiful.

I was making Asparagus Milanese long before fresh asparagus was widely available in Australia, when it was perfectly acceptable to serve asparagus from a can. I have no recollection of where the recipe came from, it’s scribbled into my historic recipe folder, but unlike many other ideas from there, it’s still good today. Asparagus Milanese is quick to prepare, can be made ahead and is flexible enough to be made to suit any number. It makes an interesting breakfast and a satisfying light meal.

Asparagus has a natural affinity with both cheese and cured pork. Don’t limit yourself to ham though, prosciutto, serrano and bacon work well, and while my first choice of cheese is gruyere, you may prefer parmesan or cheddar. I like to serve some crusty bread or toast beside Asparagus Milanese so I can mop up the delicious cheesy juices from my plate.

Asparagus Milanese : for 2

12 fat spears of asparagus

4 slices of ham

1/4 cup cream (I used lactose free)

2 turns of the nutmeg grater

black pepper to taste

30g gruyere cheese

1 teaspoon butter

snipped chives

Snap the tough ends off the asparagus spears then peel the bottom 1/3 of each.

Bring a pot of water to the boil. Drop the asparagus into the boiling water then as soon as it returns to the boil, remove from the heat, drain, then refresh the asparagus in iced water. Once the spears are cool, drain them on a clean tea towel.

Preheat the grill to 200C.  Butter a shallow heatproof dish.

Mix together the cream, pepper and nutmeg.

Trim the slices of ham so the asparagus will peek out the ends. Lay three spears of asparagus in each slice of ham and roll into a neat bundle.

Lay them into the buttered dish.

Sprinkle half the cheese over the asparagus, spoon over the cream then sprinkle over the remaining cheese. Dot with the surface with butter.

Put the dish under the grill far enough away that the bundles will warm through before the cheese becomes brown and bubbly, 8-10 minutes.

About ladyredspecs

I live in sunny Brisbane, Australia. My love of good food drives me as a cook, a reader, a traveller, an artist and but mostly as an eater. I cooked professionally for many years but have no formal training. Simply guided by a love of eating good food, respect for ingredients and an abhorrence of artificial additives, I cook instinctively applying the technical know how acquired by experience. I hope you enjoy what I share Sandra AKA ladyredspecs

28 comments on “Asparagus Milanese

  1. Chef Devaux
    November 25, 2015

    I love the combination of the asparagus Milanese. And the flavours are so delicious. Yummy.

    Like

  2. Gather and Graze
    November 9, 2015

    Fabulous – a beautiful, new way to eat asparagus. Love the sound of this dish Sandra… can’t wait to try it, while the asparagus is still in abundance at the markets.

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      November 9, 2015

      It’s so simple even your boys could make it to help out…

      Like

  3. Liz - Good Things
    November 9, 2015

    What a lovely idea! xx

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      November 9, 2015

      Thanks Liz, it’s been a regular in our house for many, many years

      Like

  4. chef mimi
    November 9, 2015

    Oh my god sandra. I could eat this every day. Every day.

    Like

  5. Michelle
    November 7, 2015

    It’s so hard going into winter to see your beautiful spring foods! I will have to remember this recipe for the months (sadly way) ahead…

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      November 7, 2015

      There is so much about winter to enjoy though, open fires, soups, coats and scarves….

      Like

      • Michelle
        November 7, 2015

        Well, you’re helping. But I still hate winter. 😦

        Liked by 1 person

  6. Glenda
    November 7, 2015

    Hi Sandra, we are having this for dinner tomorrow night. I have a lot of asparagus we have to eat.

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      November 7, 2015

      I hope you enjoy the asparagus dish Glenda, it’s a great one to throw together without weights and measures

      Like

  7. Gretchen
    November 7, 2015

    This looks incredible. I long for spring as I look at this post! I’ll have to pin it and remember when our asparagus arrives, all five of us eat asparagus all spring. Can’t get enough of it!

    Like

  8. Francesca
    November 6, 2015

    I love the ingredients and the recipe and I’m sure Stefano will be too. I’ll sure make it for my little family!

    Like

  9. Conor Bofin
    November 6, 2015

    We can only get Southern Hemisphere asparagus at this time of year. It really doesn’t travel. I’m jealous.

    Like

  10. cheergerm
    November 5, 2015

    From one asparagus piggy to another. Oh boy this looks good. Will have to make just for me one night.

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      November 5, 2015

      Are you a lone asparagus lover too?

      Liked by 1 person

      • cheergerm
        November 6, 2015

        The sproglets won’t touch it but the Yak loves it, however, his vegetarianism gets in the way of this dish. I have just remembered Dad is in town tonight so will see if I can rustle this up. (I have some comte in the fridge, will just leave out the ham for The Yak.) 😁

        Liked by 1 person

  11. Serena @ foodfulife
    November 5, 2015

    Wow! I didn’t know about asparagus Milanese…This dish looks superb!

    Like

  12. Francesca
    November 5, 2015

    This looks delicious. Sadly and annoyingly, Mr T doesn’t eat asparagus ( or artichoke or fennel). What is wrong with the man! So, it seems a lot of work to make a separate meal for ‘moi’ although I am tempted.

    Like

  13. Darya
    November 5, 2015

    This looks delicious!I also love asparagus (your post is making me long for spring…), but this is a new way for me. It reminds me a bit of a local traditional dish, endives with ham (gratineed with a béchamel and lots of grated cheese), except this is much lighter and sophisticated. Yum!

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      November 5, 2015

      Glad you like this Darya, it’s a delicious springtime treat

      Like

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This entry was posted on November 5, 2015 by in Breakfast and Brunch, Food, Gluten Free, Light Savoury Dishes and tagged , , , , .
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