Asparagus is also called “white gold” and this vegetable deserves that, although the name is not entirely correct, because there are also green asparagus. Asparagus has very good nutrients, few calories and is also diuretic. As if that weren’t enough, many people simply love it and it is a much sought-after and well-selling vegetable in restaurants. Limburg in particular is known for the cultivation of asparagus. If you have the chance, it is best to get them from the farmer yourself. They are much cheaper there than at the supermarkets and often fresher. The preparation is not too difficult, although you do need to learn how to peel it.
White and green asparagus are low-calorie and healthy
The white asparagus are the shoots of the asparagus plant and grow underground in the dark. The green asparagus are the shoots that grow above the ground. The white asparagus is the most sold. They have a slightly better taste than the green ones and are also more expensive due to the high demand for them. However, both types of asparagus are low in calories.
Peel white asparagus well
White asparagus must be peeled well so that there are no hard strands left after cooking. Green asparagus has a slightly stronger taste, but is just as tasty and easier to prepare. They usually don’t even need to be peeled. Only the thicker green asparagus needs to be peeled. With the thinner ones you usually only need to cut off the bottom part of the stem. As with white asparagus, it is usually dried out and hard.
Buy asparagus peeled
You can also get the asparagus peeled at many farm shops and some supermarkets. They are then usually peeled by machine in front of you. This usually only costs one euro. It is a solution for people who are not very handy and often break the asparagus while peeling.
The nutrients in asparagus are beneficial
Asparagus is a very healthy vegetable. Both types of asparagus contain many vitamins and minerals. The green asparagus even has slightly more vitamins and minerals than the white type. The ingredients are good against rheumatism, gout, fatigue, stimulate the liver and kidneys and are also blood purifying. The vegetable has a cell-regulating effect, which is why it is suspected that it is anti-cancer, but this has not yet been proven by research. However, its fibers definitely have a positive influence on the functioning of the intestine.
In addition to all these good properties, asparagus is also diuretic and, above all, low in calories, making it suitable for a slimming diet. Of course, only if no extra cream sauce is added on top. After all, that would negate the effect. However, they are also tasty with a hard-boiled, crumbled egg and/or some shredded ham on top.
Fresh asparagus is not only available in the spring
You can eat fresh asparagus all year round, because it is also grown in greenhouses, imported from other countries and preserved in glass, but you can only buy real, fresh asparagus from the cold ground in the Netherlands between the end of April and 24 June. They are then harvested and sold immediately. After June 24, the plant must rest again and gain new energy in order to be able to supply good asparagus again the following year.
By mid-May the asparagus will be cheaper
Asparagus is often still very expensive at the end of April, but by mid-May the price has usually dropped considerably. If you have some patience, it will be cheaper. You can easily check whether the asparagus in the store or at the vegetable market is fresh by rubbing two asparagus stalks together. You will hear fresh asparagus squeaking. In addition, the stems must be straight and the heads still closed. Fresh asparagus is light yellow or beautiful green.
Strong smell in the toilet
Some people are suspicious of the strong smell of urine after eating asparagus. However, it can’t hurt. The liver processes the ingredients of the asparagus and during this processing certain substances are converted and excreted. This gives a strong odor when you have to go to the toilet for the first time to get water.
Preparation of asparagus
Asparagus is tastiest with a homemade, fresh sauce. There are many bags of ready-made sauces in the store, but they also have to be mixed and stirred well, after which they taste less good than a fresh sauce with fresh ingredients. However, the time required for this is the same as the time required for the homemade sauce. After all, expensive vegetables deserve the best sauce. Most people find asparagus tastiest when prepared in the classic way.
White and green asparagus can be prepared in the same way
Both types, white and green asparagus, can be prepared in the same way. First cook the white asparagus for about 20 minutes in a pan with plenty of water, a little bit of salt and at most a knob of butter, so that they can lie as flat as possible and are submerged in water. In a high asparagus pan, the asparagus can be cooked standing up and only needs to be submerged in water, but not everyone has such a pan. A large pan with plenty of water also works well.
Green asparagus is bought less
Green asparagus is not as popular as white asparagus. However, the green asparagus is also very tasty. They usually do not need to be peeled. They also tend to be a bit thinner and only need to be cooked for 5 or 6 minutes. The cooking time of both types also depends on the thickness of the asparagus. Add a knob of butter and a pinch of salt.
Make the sauce for the asparagus
In the meantime, melt a knob of butter in a saucepan over a low heat and add one or two tablespoons of flour as needed. Stir until you have a firm, cohesive ball. Add about two tablespoons of the asparagus cooking liquid and stir until the mixture is a glossy liquid paste. Add a dash of milk, a little salt and pepper, or possibly stock powder. Taste for seasoning and add two finely chopped slices of ham and a coarsely chopped boiled egg at the end.
Do not make the sauce too thin
The sauce should be thick/liquid. Not too thin, because then it will run through the asparagus and be of little use to you. Drain the cooked asparagus, place it on a heated plate and pour the warm sauce over it. Another option is to prepare the asparagus sauce without the boiled egg and then sprinkle the chopped egg over it after pouring the sauce over it.
Asparagus is also available canned and in glass jars
Asparagus can be bought in supermarkets all year round. If not fresh, then in small cans or jars. Those asparagus are not fresh and are often smaller, thinner and somewhat tougher than fresh asparagus. These asparagus are often used in cold buffets. There they are, rolled up in a slice of ham to decorate the cold buffet. This way they are easy to eat.
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