This last week was a super creative & fun one. Also one that was very much based around food! Yum! On my birthday, wednesday, I decided to stay away from design projects and to take the day to experiment with a lovely, very healthy and soon-to-be seasonal vegetable, asparagus. The perfect light of the day also made it an excellent opportunity for David and I to experiment with food photography, which, along with tasting the food, is the fabulous reward of being creative in the kitchen. I’m also super excited because this recipe is also going to be featured in an upcoming magazine (stay tuned!!).
I just love asparagus, and I especially think the small kind is so tasty and ultra versatile. You can use it in risottos, pasta, bake it in the oven with some thyme, make sushi with it, or bake it into these crunchy fries. And please remember, it’s very important to emphasise the crunchy here, so panko bread crumbs are perfect for that. What are these? Korean, large breadcrumb “flakes”. Not your average breadcrumb. I found mine at Delhaize, by the asian product section, and I always love to use them when making crunchy veggie patties, as they make all the difference. Another weirdo ingredient: Sriracha, which is used in the spicy mayo sauce. You can easily find it at asian shops. Watch out though, because you might fall in love with it, and become the kind of person who keeps an extra large bottle at home and who throws another mini-bottle in their purse when going out (
As some of you know, I’m a person who eats plant-based most of the time, and this is exactly what I like to promote when it comes to Orla Collective. It’s easy to make the mayo vegan by subbing regular mayo with vegan mayo (the best I found so far was at Naturata), however, I’m not so sure how I’d replace eggs to make a sticky mixture to bread the asparagus. If someone has an idea around that, please let me know in the comments! And as a representative of this blog, I want to make sure you do the right thing if you proceed with this recipe: please avoid purchasing using industry-farmed eggs. The bio label alone isn’t a win, especially if you get these at a big supermarket, animals are still treated the same way (if you don’t know what I’m talking about, watch some heart-breaking egg industry videos and you’ll understand…) Make the extra effort and use some from your neighbouring small farmer or any person you might know that has a little family chicken coop and some extra eggs to share. It’s better for the animals, better for your recipe too!
Now, if you did make this extra effort, kudos to you! You deserve to make yourself some of those baked asparagus fries. Let’s get cookin’!
- 1 bunch of small asparagus
- 80g panko bread crumbs (or homemade crumbs from old bread)
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 eggs
- 2 tablespoons water
- 60g flour
Spicy Lemon Mayo
- 50g mayonnaise
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon fresh parsley, chopped
- 1 tablespoon fresh dill, chopped
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 2 teaspoons Sriracha or Tabasco
- 1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
Here’s how we do it!
Preheat oven to 200°C. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
In a pan over medium-low heat, toast the breadcrumbs until lightly golden. Transfer to a plate and add salt. Toss to combine.
In a bowl beat eggs and water together to create an egg wash and pour onto a plate. Set up a “work station” with the asparagus, flour that has been placed on a plate, egg wash, toasted panko crumbs, and baking sheet.
To bread the asparagus: First roll an asparagus spear in flour, then egg wash, and then breadcrumbs – pressing to adhere. Repeat with remaining asparagus.
Place the breaded asparagus on the baking sheet and place in the oven. Bake for 10 minutes until the asparagus is cooked but still crunchy.
While the asparagus is baking, make the dipping sauce. Place all ingredients for the sauce in a bowl and stir to combine.
Plate, serve, and enjoy!
Tip.: to make this snack kid-friendly, simply omit the spicy sauce! ENJOY!