Nothing can be easier than this ‘fix it and forget it’ Oven Roasted Asparagus. It will give you tender, lovely stalks every time. It is perfect if you have your oven on for other menu items.
There is nothing to this… parchment paper to wrap the asparagus. I don’t even tie the paper – I just tuck the ends under so the packet is sealed. You do want to make sure the packet is sealed since you are in effect steaming the asparagus.
This method works really well if you have thicker stalks. They always say to choose young, thin, tight stalks. I sometimes find them a bit bitter so I don’t mind the thicker stalks -pencil up to finger size.
The trick is to rinse/soak/wash the stalks really well so you don’t get any sand in your dish. Then hold the neck of the ‘flower’ end and the bottom of the stalk and bend the bottom gently. The stalk will snap off naturally where it goes from tender to woody. On thick stalks you may get 2 or 3 inches off the bottom. That’s ok… you don’t want the woody parts.
So… clean and snap the asparagus, wrap it up securely in parchment paper- a drizzle of olive oil, a pinch of sea salt and a slice or two of lemon… and you’re done!
This works well if you have other dishes for the meal in the oven already. I served it with Roast Lamb with White Wine and Major Grey’s and Potatoes Anna Light and I made the whole dinner in the oven. You just have to coordinate your timing to get everything in and out at the right time.
Put the lamb and potatoes in first and 30 minutes before they are done put the asparagus in on the upper rack. When you remove the lamb and potatoes to rest leave the asparagus for another 15 minutes or so.
The originally recipe calls for cooking 60 minutes at 325 degrees. I adjust that depending on what else I am cooking. If I have to leave the oven at 350 for other dishes I only cook the asparagus for about 30 minutes total. If the other dish is forgiving I might reduce the oven to 325 degrees and leave the asparagus for 45 minutes to an hour. I would not leave it for more than an hour under any circumstances.
If you like your asparagus on the al dente side lean toward the 30 minute mark.
Sauvignon Blanc is the classic pairing with asparagus. The herbal notes of the Sauvignon Blanc and the acidity work with the asparagus and the lemon accent.
As an alternative I would suggest a Muscadet Sevre et Maine or Vinho Verde.. the clean, crisp freshness of both of these wines will not fight with the asparagus flavor and will stand up to the lemon accent as well.
- 1 lb fresh asparagus
- drizzle of olive oil
- slice of lemon
- pinch of sea salt
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees. (See notes above for different oven temperatures).
- Clean asparagus and snap off woody ends.
- Wrap spears in parchment paper, tucking the ends under so the packet remains closed during roasting.
- Drizzle olive oil over spears, sprinkle with sea salt and toss in lemon slice.
- Roast 30 to 60 minutes depending on how 'al dente' you like your asparagus.