Asparagus is in season! In Germany, you see it sold at this time of the year almost everywhere: in the supermarkets, at the nearest grocery stores, at the weekly market or along the roads where local produce put up stands to sell their organic harvests. Thinking back, when I was still living in the Philippines, I could count in one hand the times I had eaten asparagus. It is not because I do not like them (on the contrary in fact) but simply because they were difficult to find aside from being expensive since they are not really locally grown and mostly imported.
Having not so much experience with cooking asparagus, I was quite in a predicament when we bought a bunch as I didn’t know what to do with them. I know about bacon wrapped asparagus, which I have done several times before and that it is! But that is more like a side dish to me and these days I do not have time to prepare more than a one-dish meal (rice is not counting of course).
When I asked Armin for ideas he said they usually have it topped with Hollandaise sauce. Klick! An idea! Aspararus + pasta + white sauce. It was perfect! I like the asparagus to still be crispy so I stir-fried them real quick first and just added them to the sauce at the end.
- 1 bunch of asparagus (about 15-20 spears), cut into smaller sizes
- 3 large cloves garlic, each sliced into 3-4
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 2 Tbsp cooking oil
- 1 cup bacon bits
- 2 Tbsp butter
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 200-250ml all-purpose cream or heavy whipping cream
- 200-250ml evaporated milk or fresh milk
- salt and pepper to taste
- grated Parmesan cheese
- 300g pasta noodles, cooked as per package directions
- In a pan, heat olive oil under medium-high heat. Add the asparagus and garlic slices, sprinkle some salt and pepper and saute for about 3-4 minutes or until some sides are browned but the asparagus are still crisp. Remove from pan and set aside.
- In the same pan, heat cooking oil under medium heat. Cook the bacon bits until browned. Remove everything from pan and set aside.
- Again in the same pan, saute garlic and onion in butter until tender. Add milk and let it simmer. Next, add the cream and let simmer until it gets a bit thicker, turn the heat lower. Add back the cooked bacon bits with oil. Season with pepper and salt.
- Once the sauce is thick enough remove from heat and toss in the asparagus.
- Place cooked noodles in serving plates and top with sauce then add Parmesan. Serve while hot.