This is the first asparagus of the season and I just couldn't resist passing along a recipe which many of you probably already know. It is a great easy way to prepare this harbinger of spring.
1½-2 pounds asparagus, avoid pencil-thin if you can
2 tablespoons olive oil
Coarse or regular salt
1. Prepare the asparagus by snapping off the bottom of the stalks at the place where they break.
2. Preheat the oven to 475ºF.
3. Toss the asparagus with the olive oil. Spread out on a low-sided cookie sheet, lined with parchment paper or silpat.
4. Place the asparagus in the oven for 10 minutes. Shake to turn. Test for doneness. If the stalks are soft, remove from the oven. If not, return to the oven for an additional 5 minutes. If you use pencil-thin asparagus, decrease the time.
5. Remove from the oven, salt lightly, and serve.
Note: If something else is in the oven at a lower temperature, you can put the asparagus in there and watch it until it’s done. Of course, it will take a bit longer than the above times, but it’s just fine. When it’s done, remove it from the oven. You can return it briefly to reheat if you wish.
Adapted from Crescent Dragonwagon’s Passionate Vegetarian