Hazelnut-roasted white asparagus with whipped goat’s cheese, honey & thyme dip

Hazelnut-roasted white asparagus with whipped goat’s cheese, honey & thyme dip

By
From
Lagom
Serves
4
Photographer
Yuki Sugiura

White asparagus starts to make an appearance around spring time and is one of those ingredients that causes a ripple of excitement among chefs. The stalks are grown underground without access to sunlight, giving them their pale colour and extra-tender texture. They can lend a bit of elegance to your meal (if you can find them) though you could, of course, use thick green asparagus stalks instead. Either way, this is a recipe to really celebrate this sprightly vegetable when it is at its very best.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
500g white asparagus, (or green if unavailable - use the thick spears)
1 tablespoon hazelnut or walnut oil
30g blanched hazelnuts
120g creme fraiche
55g rindless goat’s cheese
1/2 garlic clove, very finely chopped
2 teaspoons honey
few thyme sprigs, leaves picked and roughly chopped

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 220°C. Bring a large pan of water to the boil and blanch the asparagus for no more than a minute. Drain thoroughly, then tip into a roasting tin. Drizzle over the oil, scatter over the hazelnuts and season with salt and pepper. Toss everything together with your hands to coat.
  2. Roast for 8–10 minutes, turning halfway through, until the asparagus starts to crisp up and feels soft when pierced with a knife.
  3. Meanwhile, use a fork to mash the crème fraîche, goat’s cheese and garlic together with a pinch of sea salt until creamy. Add the honey, most of the thyme leaves and mix everything together thoroughly then taste to adjust the seasoning. You can also blend the mixture for a smoother dip. Serve with the warm roasted asparagus spears, either as a dip or a drizzle, and sprinkle a few thyme leaves on top.
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