Panko Baked Asparagus

Asparagus season has arrived late this year, so its even more exciting than usual. We have been enjoying loads of it while I try out different ideas and we think these crispy spears are a winner either as a starter or canapé. They take less than 15 minutes to prepare and bake in 6-8 minutes, so they can be on your plate in half an hour. They won’t stay there for long though, guaranteed.


Some other asparagus recipes to enjoy include:

Chilled Asparagus Soup

Planted Asparagus

Asparagus with Crispy Parma Ham

...... and there are more, click on Recipe Index to find them.

Ingredients - serves 2 as a starter or 5/6 as a canape

1 bunch of asparagus

30g panko crumbs

2 tablespoons plain flour

15g finely grated parmesan

1 beaten egg

Zest of one lemon

Salt and pepper

Olive oil spray


Method

Put the egg in a bowl that is large enough to fit the length of the asparagus spears, add some salt and lightly beat the egg (the salt makes the egg easier to work with, see Tips).


Wash the asparagus, cut off the woody ends and gently pat dry.


Mix the panko crumbs in a shallow dish with the finely grated parmesan, lemon zest and seasoning.


Sprinkle the flour onto a plate.


Line up the 3 dishes/plates in the order they will be needed: flour, egg, panko crumbs and at the end place a parchment lined baking sheet.


Roll each spear in the flour, shake off any excess.


Roll each spear in the beaten egg


Roll each spear in the panko crumbs.


Place on the baking sheet.


At this stage they can be left in the fridge until required.


To cook:

Heat the oven to 200°


Spray the asparagus lightly with olive oil - use a fresh sheet of parchment paper if it has become damp in the fridge.


Cook for 6-8 minutes (if your asparagus is really thick, they may even take another minute). Don’t overcook, they are definitely even lovelier with a little 'bite'.

Serve with preserved lemon mayonnaise


Preserved lemon mayonnaise


ingredients

2 tbsp good quality mayonnaise

1 tbsp finely chopped preserved lemon

Salt to taste


Method

Scrape the flesh away from the lemon and chop very finely. Stir into the mayonnaise and season to taste.






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