The ability to get just about any fruit or vegetable year-round has changed the rhythm of the seasons. Apples and carrots are ripe for the picking any time of year because they can be grown in the U.S., New Zealand, Mexico or any number of places, when the season is just right. That’s a good thing, since we have a whole world to feed, but sometimes I miss the seasonal calendar of produce.
Take asparagus, for example. It can be the harbinger of spring. Those bright, green shoots coming out of the newly-warmed ground is a welcome signal that we might soon be able to put our jackets away. Somehow my body remembers that seasonal rhythm, since I crave asparagus when the buds fall off the trees and leaves unfurl in the warmth of the sun. I know I can get them any day of the year now, but I love the throw-back to this
springtime ritual every May.
Bacon Wrapped Asparagus Bundles
My produce specialist suggested these bundles as a side dish for a meal I was planning last year. They’re a crowd pleaser and you might get even the pickiest veggie-phobic people to try something new. Preheat the oven to 400° F. Clean and dry a bunch of asparagus, snapping off the woody end of the stalk. Cut 4-6 slices of bacon in half, lengthwise, and wrap around 3 stalks of asparagus; repeat with all of the asparagus. Place bundles on a rimmed baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake for 22-28 minutes, until the bacon is crispy and the asparagus is bright green.
Amy Goetz is a FoodE Expert for Lunds & Byerlys Woodbury. She helps customers with recipe ideas, teaches cooking classes and plans events. She writes about food and recipes.