May 31, 2020
Sally is¬†hopeful that during June she will be announcing some good news
regarding both the Corner Shop extension and the Restaurant re-opening date.
Meanwhile,¬†she would like to share a few kitchen secrets with you.
Starting this week, she focuses on a favourite early Summer ingredient,
Take advantage before it disappears for another year,
as when asparagus is served at the height of its season
– now, this week, this moment,
it is a fabulous thing, to be cherished and prized.
Buy a bunch grown in Suffolk, Norfolk, Herefordshire
or perhaps from your local pick- your-own farm.
One bunch should be a perfect amount for 2 (not too hungry) people.
Firstly wash the spears in cold water,
as the tips can so easily¬†trap specks of sand within.
Trim the bases away (perhaps no more than 1 to 2 cm) then,
using a peeler,¬†remove a small amount of
the dark green peel from the bottom half of each spear.
Rinse again in cold water and leave on one side
while bringing a pan of salted water to the boil.
Gently tip in the asparagus, bring back to the boil
and cook for no more than 1 to 2 minutes,
or until they are bright green and still slightly crisp to the bite.
They should never be overcooked¬†(if you are old¬†enough to
remember tinned asparagus,¬†you will know what I mean…).
Without delay, drain away the water, drizzle the asparagus
with good olive oil,¬†sea salt and pepper and toss in the pan gently.
Serve them immediately just as they are,¬†as a simple first course,
or perhaps choose one of the following:
*Lay the spears on a salad plate (perhaps as in the photograph)¬†and
using a peeler,¬†shave Parmesan over, or crumble fresh goat cheese on top.
Serve with a selection of little salad leaves and a¬†simple vinaigrette
made with good olive oil,¬†a hint of Dijon mustard,
a squeeze of lemon juice, some sea salt and pepper.
*Bring a pan of salted water to the boil¬†and
gently poach a few fresh eggs until done to your liking.
Remove them from the pan carefully with a slotted spoon
and drain onto kitchen paper.
¬†Immediately place them onto warm plates,
arranging the asparagus around,
then drizzle with creme fraiche¬†and chopped chives and serve.
*Lay the asparagus like soldiers on a warm serving plate,
place roasted or poached fish fillets over the top,
scatter with chopped soft herbs¬†such as chives, tarragon or dill,
then finish¬†with a drizzle of olive oil and a touch of lemon.
Serve warm or at room temperature with steamed Jersey Royals.
Follow Sally at instagram.com/sallyclarkeltd¬†