Fresh Farmer's Market Finds: Asparagus

Peter Klein from Seedling Fruit,, shows us how to pick the best asparagus and gives us a recipe to use with our fresh farmer's market pickings.


Prep: 30 minutes Bake: 5 minutes

8 ounces fresh asparagus, trimmed and cut into bite-size pieces

1 tablespoon butter

12 eggs, lightly beaten

1⁄2 teaspoon salt

1⁄2 teaspoon cracked black pepper

3⁄4 cup roasted red sweet peppers, chopped

Bacon-Cheddar Cornmeal Biscuits (recipe follows)

3⁄4 cup shredded Swiss cheese (3 ounces)

1.       In a large skillet, cook asparagus in hot butter over medium heat about 6 minutes or until crisp-tender. Remove asparagus from skillet.

2.       Add eggs, salt and black pepper to skillet. Using a spatula, lift and fold cooked egg, letting uncooked egg run underneath. Cook about 4 minutes or until almost set; stir in roasted peppers and asparagus. Remove from heat.

3.       Split the Bacon-Cheddar Cornmeal Biscuits in half horizontally. Arrange bottoms of biscuits in a 15x10x1-inch baking pan. Divide egg mixture and Swiss cheese among biscuit bottoms. Add biscuit tops.

4.       Bake, uncovered, in a 350° oven for 5 to 8 minutes or until heated through and cheese is melted.

Bacon-Cheddar Cornmeal Biscuits:

Makes 8 (2-biscuit) servings

Stir together 13⁄4 cups all-purpose flour, 1⁄2 cup cornmeal and 1 tablespoon baking powder. Cut 1⁄4 cup cold butter into flour mixture until butter is size of small peas. Add 3⁄4 cup shredded cheddar cheese; 4 slices bacon, crisp-cooked, drained and crumbled; 2⁄3 cup milk; 1 egg, lightly beaten; and 2 tablespoons snipped fresh chives. Stir just until moistened.

Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead by gently folding dough for four to six strokes. Pat into an 8-inch square that is 1⁄2 inch thick. Cut into sixteen 2-inch squares. Place squares 1 inch apart on a lightly greased baking sheet. Brush squares with additional milk. Bake in a 425° oven for 10 to 12 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from baking sheet. Cool on a wire rack.


Tuesday:  Lincoln Square

Wednesday:  Chicago’s Green City Market

Thursday:  West Side Market

Saturday:  Evanston

Sunday:  Wicker Park Market

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