What to Do with the Season's First Asparagus

Usher in the first days of spring with these bright recipes.
By: Foodlets
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Something new has happened in our house this year. We’ve become a two-bundle family — in terms of asparagus, this is. One dainty parcel of asparagus, wrapped in a single rubber band, won’t cut it anymore. That’s because every time I cook a pound of asparagus, my husband and our four small rascals hoover that stuff up so fast I hardly have time to snag a spear myself.! So we’ve graduated. And it’s for the best. Now if I could just decide on which of these dishes to start with.

If you’ve never cooked asparagus before, and certainly if this is your children’s first taste of it, you must start with this classic recipe. Only the Barefoot Contessa could use so few ingredients to generate a fan-favorite dish with more than 300 user reviews.

Photo by: Picasa

Picasa

It’s always nice for kids to help with dinner, and nothing gets them more interested in actually eating dinner than lending a hand in making it. There are a few simple steps for kids to jump in along the way when prepping this simple pizza, dotted with creamy ricotta and zesty lemon.

TrishaYearwood_AsparagusCasserole_H

TrishaYearwood_AsparagusCasserole_H

Chef Name: Trisha Yearwood Full Recipe Name: Asparagus Casserole Talent Recipe: Trisha Yearwood’s Asparagus Casserole, as seen on Trisha’s Southern Kitchen FNK Recipe: Project: Foodnetwork.com, HOLIDAY/SUPER BOWL/COMFORT/HEALTHY Show Name: Trisha’s Southern Kitchen Food Network / Cooking Channel: Food Network

Photo by: Renee Comet ©2013, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Renee Comet, 2013, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

This two-layer side dish is a Southern cook’s dream. Start with a layer of fresh asparagus, and top it with a creamy, cheesy blanket of eggs and saltine crackers.

Easter-asparagus 0023

This brunch favorite is easier to make than you might think. All you need is a blender for creamy results.

This recipe follows a tried-and-true rule of cooking: Anything wrapped in bacon is going to be pretty darn good.

EI-1206 Penne with Asparagus and Cherry Tomatoes

What happens when sweet peas mingle with asparagus, garlic, fresh basil and tomatoes? You get the taste of spring on a plate.

Trisha's satisfying recipe makes a great centerpiece at brunch, but you can also move it to nighttime. Serve this vegetarian dinner with a big loaf of crusty bread and a salad on the side.

Grilled Asparagus Bruschetta prepared by Jeff Mauro, as seen on the Food Network's The Kitchen, Season 2.

Photo by: Emile Wamsteker ©2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Emile Wamsteker, 2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

For a quick party bite, look no further than these 20-minute toasts, slathered with a goat cheese mixture and finished with tender grilled asparagus.

Busy parents, this one’s for you. Just steam the veggies, then drizzle fresh lemon and a touch of shaved Parmesan cheese on top. It’s a kid-friendly side dish done in minutes.

Charity Curley Mathews is the mom of four small kids and lives in North Carolina on a mini farm in the making. She’s a contributor to InStyle, The Huffington Post and eHow Food and the founder of Foodlets.com, a food and parenting blog where every recipe is full of fresh ingredients, simple to make and kid-tested x4. You can follow her on Facebook.

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