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Thread: trimming asparagus

  1. #1
    maxine in ri Guest

    Default trimming asparagus

    Got some asparagus for $1 at the reduced rack couple days ago. Trimmed
    off the bottom inch, put em in a container with water and they stood
    up straight by the next day.

    Though I had lopped off enough of the bottoms, so rinsed them, tossed
    them with a little olive oil, salt, pepper, and lemon juice, and
    roasted them for 20 minutes, til they started to look a little brown.

    Hadn't cut off enough of the bottom. They were half tough and
    stringy.

    How do you pick good asparagus (I'm not going to waste my money again
    on the iffy stuff)? How much of the bottom do you break off? How do
    you know _where_ to break it off?

    Some bargains just aren't bargains.

    maxine in ri

  2. #2
    cybercat Guest

    Default Re: trimming asparagus


    "maxine in ri" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > Got some asparagus for $1 at the reduced rack couple days ago. Trimmed
    > off the bottom inch, put em in a container with water and they stood
    > up straight by the next day.
    >
    > Though I had lopped off enough of the bottoms, so rinsed them, tossed
    > them with a little olive oil, salt, pepper, and lemon juice, and
    > roasted them for 20 minutes, til they started to look a little brown.
    >
    > Hadn't cut off enough of the bottom. They were half tough and
    > stringy.
    >
    > How do you pick good asparagus (I'm not going to waste my money again
    > on the iffy stuff)? How much of the bottom do you break off? How do
    > you know _where_ to break it off?
    >
    > Some bargains just aren't bargains.
    >

    Maybe when they are old they are tough.



  3. #3
    brooklyn1 Guest

    Default Re: trimming asparagus


    "maxine in ri" wrote:
    >
    > Got some asparagus for $1 at the reduced rack couple days ago.


    Trust me, don't get involved with any reduced rack.

    >Trimmed
    > off the bottom inch, put em in a container with water and they stood
    > up straight by the next day.


    Wish I could do that with just water. LOL

    > Though I had lopped off enough of the bottoms, so rinsed them, tossed
    > them with a little olive oil, salt, pepper, and lemon juice, and
    > roasted them for 20 minutes, til they started to look a little brown.
    >
    > Hadn't cut off enough of the bottom. They were half tough and
    > stringy.
    >
    > How do you pick good asparagus (I'm not going to waste my money again
    > on the iffy stuff)? How much of the bottom do you break off? How do
    > you know _where_ to break it off?
    >
    > Some bargains just aren't bargains.
    >
    > maxine in ri


    Zactly... they were way past their prime. that's what you get for a buck.
    Wasn't worth the olive oil, salt, pepper, and lemon juice, and cooking
    time/fuel... "roasted them for 20 minutes"... not only dried out and tough
    any tenderish portion would taste crappy... not worth having your piss
    stink.




  4. #4
    Steve Pope Guest

    Default Re: trimming asparagus

    maxine in ri <[email protected]> wrote:

    >How do you pick good asparagus (I'm not going to waste my money again
    >on the iffy stuff)? How much of the bottom do you break off? How do
    >you know _where_ to break it off?


    Cut out a section and chew on it to see how tough it is.
    If it's too tough, you need to trim them back more than that.

    Steve

  5. #5
    Sqwertz Guest

    Default Re: trimming asparagus

    maxine in ri <[email protected]> wrote:

    > Got some asparagus for $1 at the reduced rack couple days ago. Trimmed
    > off the bottom inch, put em in a container with water and they stood
    > up straight by the next day.
    >
    > Though I had lopped off enough of the bottoms, so rinsed them, tossed
    > them with a little olive oil, salt, pepper, and lemon juice, and
    > roasted them for 20 minutes, til they started to look a little brown.
    >
    > Hadn't cut off enough of the bottom. They were half tough and
    > stringy.
    >
    > How do you pick good asparagus (I'm not going to waste my money again
    > on the iffy stuff)? How much of the bottom do you break off? How do
    > you know _where_ to break it off?
    >
    > Some bargains just aren't bargains.


    Grab the asparagus at the large end and at the center. Bend in
    half. It will naturally break where it turns from tough to edible.
    Or you can cut off the bottom half inch and peel the bottom portion
    with a veggie peeler.

    -sw

  6. #6
    Wayne Boatwright Guest

    Default Re: trimming asparagus

    On Sun 29 Mar 2009 04:41:52p, maxine in ri told us...

    > Got some asparagus for $1 at the reduced rack couple days ago. Trimmed
    > off the bottom inch, put em in a container with water and they stood
    > up straight by the next day.
    >
    > Though I had lopped off enough of the bottoms, so rinsed them, tossed
    > them with a little olive oil, salt, pepper, and lemon juice, and
    > roasted them for 20 minutes, til they started to look a little brown.
    >
    > Hadn't cut off enough of the bottom. They were half tough and
    > stringy.
    >
    > How do you pick good asparagus (I'm not going to waste my money again
    > on the iffy stuff)? How much of the bottom do you break off? How do
    > you know _where_ to break it off?
    >
    > Some bargains just aren't bargains.
    >
    > maxine in ri
    >


    I usually select medium-thick to thick spears, but regardless of the
    diameter of the spear, the head should be tight.

    I don't cut asparagus, but rather, hold the top end almost halfway down the
    stalk, and with the other hand grasp the bottom and bend until it snaps.
    It will usually leave a ragged break which can be trimmed if you wish.

    I've found this method the most reliable for determining where tender and
    tough meet.

    --
    Wayne Boatwright

    "One man's meat is another man's poison"
    - Oswald Dykes, English writer, 1709.

  7. #7
    Sqwertz Guest

    Default Re: trimming asparagus

    Wayne Boatwright <[email protected]> wrote:

    > I've found this method the most reliable for determining where tender and
    > tough meet.


    Hey - great idea! Too bad I just posted that a half-hour earlier.

    -sw

  8. #8
    Melba's Jammin' Guest

    Default Re: trimming asparagus

    In article
    <[email protected]>,
    maxine in ri <[email protected]> wrote:

    > How do you pick good asparagus (I'm not going to waste my money again
    > on the iffy stuff)? How much of the bottom do you break off? How do
    > you know _where_ to break it off?
    >
    > Some bargains just aren't bargains.
    >
    > maxine in ri


    I prefer the fatter stalks to the pencil-thin stalks. I hold the top
    (maybe halfway up) of the stalk in my left hand and the bottom of the
    stalk in my right hand and bend. It breaks where it will. I toss the
    bottom part (might be as much as 2"). If I am feeling virtuous
    (something that rarely occurs) I may peel the bottom part and use it for
    soup. Mostly I don't.
    --
    -Barb, Mother Superior, HOSSSPoJ
    http://web.me.com/barbschaller - pot pie
    "What you say about someone else says more
    about you than it does about the other person."

  9. #9
    Steve Pope Guest

    Default Re: trimming asparagus

    Melba's Jammin' <[email protected]> wrote:

    >In article
    ><[email protected]>,
    >I prefer the fatter stalks to the pencil-thin stalks. I hold the top
    >(maybe halfway up) of the stalk in my left hand and the bottom of the
    >stalk in my right hand and bend. It breaks where it will. I toss the
    >bottom part (might be as much as 2"). If I am feeling virtuous
    >(something that rarely occurs) I may peel the bottom part and use it for
    >soup. Mostly I don't.


    Asparagus stems are among the vegetable scraps we routinely
    set aside to use to make vegetable stock. Much of our cooking
    is dependent upon having stock on hand. (Generally we freeze
    it in ice-cube trays, sometimes in larger containers.)

    The only vegetable scraps we discard are crucifers.

    Steve

  10. #10
    Mark Thorson Guest

    Default Re: trimming asparagus

    Sqwertz wrote:
    >
    > Grab the asparagus at the large end and at the center. Bend in
    > half. It will naturally break where it turns from tough to edible.


    Baloney. I've seen people do that, and they waste
    a considerable amount of very good asparagus that way.

    > Or you can cut off the bottom half inch and peel the bottom portion
    > with a veggie peeler.


    That's the right way to do it. If you can save the
    bottom ends from people who use the snap method to find
    the "natural" break in the asparagus, peel those ends,
    then slice into chunks for an excellent stir-fry
    ingrediant.

  11. #11
    tintalle Guest

    Default Re: trimming asparagus

    On Mar 29, 9:41*pm, maxine in ri <weed...@gmail.com> wrote:
    > Got some asparagus for $1 at the reduced rack couple days ago. Trimmed
    > off the bottom inch, put em in a container with water and they stood
    > up straight by the next day.
    >
    > Though I had lopped off enough of the bottoms, so rinsed them, tossed
    > them with a little olive oil, salt, pepper, and lemon juice, and
    > roasted them for 20 minutes, til they started to look a little brown.
    >
    > Hadn't cut off enough of the bottom. *They were half tough and
    > stringy.
    >
    > How do you pick good asparagus (I'm not going to waste my money again
    > on the iffy stuff)? *How much of the bottom do you break off? *How do
    > you know _where_ to break it off?
    >
    > Some bargains just aren't bargains.
    >
    > maxine in ri


    I use the bend and snap method too. It might waste a little, but the
    remaining portion is always tender and tasty.

    I made a lovely asparagus and mushroom fritatta for lunch today.
    Sauteed some fresh asparagus and sliced mushrooms. Added a little
    crumbled bacon and some diced sharp cheddar and mozza. Poured in the
    egg/cream/pepper mixture and then set it in the oven to bake. Served
    with hot buttered whole grain toast and fruit and yogurt and it made
    for a wonderful lunch/brunch mea for hubby and i.

  12. #12
    Mickey Zalusky Guest

    Default Re: trimming asparagus

    maxine in ri wrote:
    > Got some asparagus for $1 at the reduced rack couple days ago. Trimmed
    > off the bottom inch, put em in a container with water and they stood
    > up straight by the next day.
    >
    > Though I had lopped off enough of the bottoms, so rinsed them, tossed
    > them with a little olive oil, salt, pepper, and lemon juice, and
    > roasted them for 20 minutes, til they started to look a little brown.
    >
    > Hadn't cut off enough of the bottom. They were half tough and
    > stringy.
    >
    > How do you pick good asparagus (I'm not going to waste my money again
    > on the iffy stuff)? How much of the bottom do you break off? How do
    > you know _where_ to break it off?
    >
    > Some bargains just aren't bargains.
    >
    > maxine in ri


    In an episode of Jacques Pepin's "More Fast Food My Way" Jacques first
    peeled the bottom portion of the asparagus stalk and then broke off the
    bottom portion. He said by peeling first, you expose more of the tender
    part of the stalk and will need to break off less length. I've begun
    peeling the bottom of the stalks first, then breaking the ends and I
    think I do get more edible/tender pieces from each stalk that way.
    -mickey

  13. #13
    Omelet Guest

    Default Re: trimming asparagus

    In article
    <[email protected]>,
    maxine in ri <[email protected]> wrote:

    > Got some asparagus for $1 at the reduced rack couple days ago. Trimmed
    > off the bottom inch, put em in a container with water and they stood
    > up straight by the next day.
    >
    > Though I had lopped off enough of the bottoms, so rinsed them, tossed
    > them with a little olive oil, salt, pepper, and lemon juice, and
    > roasted them for 20 minutes, til they started to look a little brown.
    >
    > Hadn't cut off enough of the bottom. They were half tough and
    > stringy.
    >
    > How do you pick good asparagus (I'm not going to waste my money again
    > on the iffy stuff)? How much of the bottom do you break off? How do
    > you know _where_ to break it off?
    >
    > Some bargains just aren't bargains.
    >
    > maxine in ri


    Snap off the tough bottoms and save them for stock.
    Peeling them also works.
    --
    Peace! Om

    Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass.
    It's about learning to dance in the rain.
    -- Anon.

  14. #14
    Omelet Guest

    Default Re: trimming asparagus

    In article <[email protected]>,
    Sqwertz <[email protected]> wrote:

    > maxine in ri <[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    > > Got some asparagus for $1 at the reduced rack couple days ago. Trimmed
    > > off the bottom inch, put em in a container with water and they stood
    > > up straight by the next day.
    > >
    > > Though I had lopped off enough of the bottoms, so rinsed them, tossed
    > > them with a little olive oil, salt, pepper, and lemon juice, and
    > > roasted them for 20 minutes, til they started to look a little brown.
    > >
    > > Hadn't cut off enough of the bottom. They were half tough and
    > > stringy.
    > >
    > > How do you pick good asparagus (I'm not going to waste my money again
    > > on the iffy stuff)? How much of the bottom do you break off? How do
    > > you know _where_ to break it off?
    > >
    > > Some bargains just aren't bargains.

    >
    > Grab the asparagus at the large end and at the center. Bend in
    > half. It will naturally break where it turns from tough to edible.
    > Or you can cut off the bottom half inch and peel the bottom portion
    > with a veggie peeler.
    >
    > -sw


    Agreed.
    --
    Peace! Om

    Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass.
    It's about learning to dance in the rain.
    -- Anon.

  15. #15
    Omelet Guest

    Default Re: trimming asparagus

    In article <[email protected] 0>,
    Wayne Boatwright <[email protected]> wrote:

    > On Sun 29 Mar 2009 04:41:52p, maxine in ri told us...
    >
    > > Got some asparagus for $1 at the reduced rack couple days ago. Trimmed
    > > off the bottom inch, put em in a container with water and they stood
    > > up straight by the next day.
    > >
    > > Though I had lopped off enough of the bottoms, so rinsed them, tossed
    > > them with a little olive oil, salt, pepper, and lemon juice, and
    > > roasted them for 20 minutes, til they started to look a little brown.
    > >
    > > Hadn't cut off enough of the bottom. They were half tough and
    > > stringy.
    > >
    > > How do you pick good asparagus (I'm not going to waste my money again
    > > on the iffy stuff)? How much of the bottom do you break off? How do
    > > you know _where_ to break it off?
    > >
    > > Some bargains just aren't bargains.
    > >
    > > maxine in ri
    > >

    >
    > I usually select medium-thick to thick spears, but regardless of the
    > diameter of the spear, the head should be tight.
    >
    > I don't cut asparagus, but rather, hold the top end almost halfway down the
    > stalk, and with the other hand grasp the bottom and bend until it snaps.
    > It will usually leave a ragged break which can be trimmed if you wish.
    >
    > I've found this method the most reliable for determining where tender and
    > tough meet.


    I thought that was the standard? Mom taught that method to me when I
    was about 4.
    --
    Peace! Om

    Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass.
    It's about learning to dance in the rain.
    -- Anon.

  16. #16
    Omelet Guest

    Default Re: trimming asparagus

    In article <[email protected]>,
    Melba's Jammin' <[email protected]> wrote:

    > In article
    > <[email protected]>,
    > maxine in ri <[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    > > How do you pick good asparagus (I'm not going to waste my money again
    > > on the iffy stuff)? How much of the bottom do you break off? How do
    > > you know _where_ to break it off?
    > >
    > > Some bargains just aren't bargains.
    > >
    > > maxine in ri

    >
    > I prefer the fatter stalks to the pencil-thin stalks. I hold the top
    > (maybe halfway up) of the stalk in my left hand and the bottom of the
    > stalk in my right hand and bend. It breaks where it will. I toss the
    > bottom part (might be as much as 2"). If I am feeling virtuous
    > (something that rarely occurs) I may peel the bottom part and use it for
    > soup. Mostly I don't.


    Melba, freeze those bottoms and run them thru the Victorio strainer for
    cream of asparagus soup. :-) If you have the patience. <g>

    They are also good as a stock ingredient.
    --
    Peace! Om

    Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass.
    It's about learning to dance in the rain.
    -- Anon.

  17. #17
    James Silverton Guest

    Default Re: trimming asparagus

    maxine wrote on Sun, 29 Mar 2009 16:41:52 -0700 (PDT):

    > Though I had lopped off enough of the bottoms, so rinsed them,
    > tossed them with a little olive oil, salt, pepper, and lemon
    > juice, and roasted them for 20 minutes, til they started to
    > look a little brown.


    > Hadn't cut off enough of the bottom. They were half tough and
    > stringy.


    > How do you pick good asparagus (I'm not going to waste my
    > money again on the iffy stuff)? How much of the bottom do you
    > break off? How do you know _where_ to break it off?


    > Some bargains just aren't bargains.


    Asparagus at its best should be fresh looking and mostly green. I prefer
    it pencil-thin and then you just bend the stalk and move along until it
    snaps easily. If you buy the thick stuff, cut off any brownish parts and
    use a vegetable peeler to remove the last few inches of skin.

    I usually cook asparagus by boiling or steaming for 6-8 minutes. I also
    use it in Chinese stir fries after blanching for 2-3 minutes and cutting
    into 2 inch pieces on the diagonal.

    --

    James Silverton
    Potomac, Maryland

    Email, with obvious alterations: not.jim.silverton.at.verizon.not


  18. #18
    cybercat Guest

    Default Re: trimming asparagus


    "Sqwertz" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]..
    > Wayne Boatwright <[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    >> I've found this method the most reliable for determining where tender and
    >> tough meet.

    >
    > Hey - great idea! Too bad I just posted that a half-hour earlier.
    >


    You forget how many people have you kfed.



  19. #19
    James Silverton Guest

    Default Re: trimming asparagus

    cybercat wrote on Mon, 30 Mar 2009 11:00:35 -0400:


    > "Sqwertz" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    > news:[email protected]..
    >> Wayne Boatwright <[email protected]> wrote:
    >>
    >>> I've found this method the most reliable for determining
    >>> where tender and tough meet.

    >>
    >> Hey - great idea! Too bad I just posted that a half-hour
    >> earlier.
    >>


    Does everyone read every post even when not kill-filed? Not every topic
    is of equal interest.
    --

    James Silverton
    Potomac, Maryland

    Email, with obvious alterations: not.jim.silverton.at.verizon.not


  20. #20
    blake murphy Guest

    Default Re: trimming asparagus

    On Sun, 29 Mar 2009 20:35:08 -0500, Sqwertz wrote:

    > Wayne Boatwright <[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    >> I've found this method the most reliable for determining where tender and
    >> tough meet.

    >
    > Hey - great idea! Too bad I just posted that a half-hour earlier.
    >
    > -sw


    i don't think most people read *all* of a thread before deciding to whom
    and how to respond, steve. besides, he may have you killfiled.

    your pal,
    blake

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