By Jennifer Low
1 bunch asparagus
olive oil, for drizzling
1 small seedless orange or blood orange, halved
1/3 cup (75 mL) feta cheese, crumbled
1/3 cup (75 mL) pine nuts, toasted
1 tbsp (15 mL) chives, finely chopped
- Check where tender part of spears begins (cut into spear to check). With asparagus bunch still tied together, use a large sharp knife to cut off tough ends. Discard ends.
- In a large skillet (or roasting pan) large enough to hold asparagus in single layer, bring about 1 inch (2.5 cm) of water to simmer. Add a drizzle of olive oil to water. Add spears. Cover loosely and poach until asparagus is tender-crisp. Do not stir spears while they poach. (The time required depends on thickness of spears and level of simmer, but often takes 2 to 4 min.) Remove cooked spears to dish.
- Drizzle olive oil in another skillet over medium-high heat. Add asparagus (in large batches) and quickly pan-fry to lightly crisp. Season with pepper as they cook. Place asparagus on serving platter. Drizzle with a little more olive oil and a squeeze of orange juice. Sprinkle with feta, pine nuts and chives. Serve hot with rosemary-mustard lamb chops and rice.