Roasted Asparagus with Balsamic Vinaigrette

May 12, 2006 at 4:31 pm (B_minus (2.5 stars), Meyer & Romano, Other, Quick weeknight recipe, Spring recipes, Vegetable dishes)

I never used to like asparagus. At all. I always felt it tasted like grass (or at least what I imagined grass must taste like). Disliking asparagus wasn’t a problem in my family, however, since there was always someone willing to take mine off my hands.  Really, however, I should say I didn’t like asparagus until a few years ago, when I first made roasted asparagus. I followed the recipe from the cookbook Second Helpings from Union Square and I thought it was marvelous. The asparagus became black and carmelized, and the crunchy sea salt and sweet balsamic vinegar and earthy parmesan cheese all complemented it perfectly.

Ever since that first time, however, it never seems as good, and I’m not sure why. I have had grilled asparagus at two different restaurants, however, and both times I have adored it.

Today I placed about 15 fat spears on a cookie sheet, and tossed with 1/2 Tbs. olive oil and salt and pepper. I roasted it at 500 degrees until it started to sizzle, then turned the broiler on for the last few minutes. Afterwards I drizzled on balsamic vinegar. It was tasty, but the asparagus were a bit soggy rather than crisp, and they didn’t really get carmelized. Maybe I needed more olive oil? Less heat? Any suggestions?

Rating: B

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