12 October 2009

My own causality dilemma and bacon-wrapped asparagus

Do I eat asparagus because it's wrapped in crispy bacon or do I eat the bacon, because it coddles roasted asparagus?

Granted it's not a question on Aristotle's scale but it is a question I ask myself every time I reach for a bundle of spears.

I was never really a fan of asparagus. My first exprience was not hopefull--overboiled to waterlogged flacidity, each stringy and bitter and acrid bite worse than the last. The next time was as a creamed soup, a palid greyed green that only hinted at its once vital jade,. The taste was no better than my introduction.

For year my culinary life was spent avoiding asparagus. I was mostly successful--the only times it appeared on my plate was when I went to fundraiser some other gala-like celebratory dinner.

Don't ask me exactly how I was introduced to bacon-wrapped asparagus. In all likelihood it was a fingerfoodish appetiser. Those pancetta-wrapped spindly spears opened my eyes to the vegetable. But it also opened my eyes to the fact that often, disliked foods can be transformed by pairing them with different flavours and/or cooking techniques. It also helped me realise that, as far as asparagus is concerned, girth does matter...and with these, the thinner, the better...for dinner at least.

Yes, I hear some of you...it's not the asparagus you like: it's the bacon.

Well, there's little doubt that bacon (in whatever form) makes many otherwise revolting foods a lot more palatable, and if all it takes is a rasher to help me vary my veggie intake from time to time, that's not really a bad thing, is it? As with many vegetables, roasting asparagus carmelises its natural sugars, which plays well with the strip of streaky, salted, smokey goodness.

Over the years I've prepared this dish many, many times--sometimes as a side dish, sometimes as an appaetiser, sometimes with roasted potatoes as a dinner on its own...but dipped into the squidgey yolk of a poached egg, these roasted, baconed roasted spears are simply delicious.

Bacon-wrapped roasted asparagus is another non-recipe recipe. Simply wrap trimmed spears in the bacon of your choice and roast in an oven until the bacon is cooked to your liking. Depending upon your particular kitchen gods (and your oven's temp), it could take 15 minutes or 25.

Bacon-Wrapped Asparagus
Serves up to 4

16 asparagus spears, washed and snapped of their woody ends
4 rashers of streaky bacon or slices of pancetta
freshly-ground black pepper

Divide the spears into bundles of four, wrapping each one in a rasher.
Place on a foil-lined baking tray and pop into a medium-to-hot oven--350F-400F (170C-200C) for about 15 minutes or until the bacon is cooked.
Dust with freshly-ground pepper before serving.


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La Cuisine d'Helene said...

Cela à l'air tellement bon.

Fitness Foodie said...

I have never had a dilemma with asparagus, always loved it, but you are right if it is not cooked right it can be horrible. I think the pancetta wrapped asparagus would be a nice crispy alternative.

Lauren said...

Mmm These look good! I've always loved asparagus - typically, we steam it, and its always delicious =D.

Andreas said...

I also discovered asparagus for me last spring. (at least the green one) I still don't know why everyone goes apeshit about the white one.
Wrapping asparagus in bacon seems like an idea worth remembering. :)

Marisa said...

I could eat a truck-load of these. Granted I like asparagus on it's own too (even the mushy tinned ones!), but in combination with the bacon it really is sublime.

Mickle in NZ said...

Mmmm, yummo. It is asparagus season here right now. Will last until just after Christmas - yes, the lovely green spaears form part of the xmas dinner I cook.

Wrapped in bacon is scrummilicious. As is drizzled with a good olive or avocado oil and sprinkled with sea salt, baked and then squeeze over a little lime juice (be sure to have a really nice bread at hand as the juices are too good to waste).

I too have been served grey soggy lengths of fibre a cook (sadly my dear mum) tries to get away with. Even the canned stuff is better.

Huggles from me and very loud purrumbling from Zebbycat, Michelle xxx

Darina said...

I've had asparagus wrapped with prosciutto but I've never thought of wrapping it with bacon. It would taste fabulous. Definitely have to try this one. I love vegetables but somehow lack imagination when serving them.

Anonymous said...

I eat it because it taste really good. ;-)

I've said it before, I never used to like asparagus until I started cooking. I love it now.