Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Simple yet satisfying

As someone who loves food, I actually do a pretty terrible job of feeding myself sometimes. Cooking for one can be difficult, especially if you don't want to be eating the same meal four days in a row in the form of leftovers. More often than not I find myself eating pasta with butter and parmesan cheese with an apple on the side or soft boiled eggs with toast. Not that I don't enjoy eating those things, it's just not very exciting. 

So every once in a while, when I find myself with a bunch of asparagus or some nice summer tomatoes, I endeavor to make myself something a little more interesting. That something will inevitably still be fast and easy and conducive to a single serving, but there will be a few more flavours at work.

A few days ago I roasted some asparagus. It's my favourite way to eat it. If you're careful not to leave it in the oven too long it retains a lot of its satisfying crunch. And I love when the heads of the spears get a bit crispy. Plus it's so, so easy. Drizzle with some olive oil, a bit of balsamic vinegar, some lemon juice if you feel like it, sprinkle with salt and pepper, even throw in a bit of sliced garlic if you happen to have some lying around. Put it in the oven at 350F and roast for about 5 or 10 minutes depending on your oven and depending on how cooked you like your asparagus.

I cut it into smaller pieces and threw it over spaghetti (which you don't need to butter due to the oil from the asparagus). What really made it though was the sauce I topped it off with. It was a tangy mustard concoction that brightened the whole thing, lifting it out of its rather mundane status of pasta with vegetables and turning it into something that actually felt like a proper meal.

To make the sauce, combine 3 tbsp of Dijon mustard, 1/4 cup of honey, 3 tbsp of lemon juice, and 1 tbsp of olive oil. Whisk it together and voila! Sauce for your asparagus. It could be used just over the asparagus as a side dish, but it works really well as a pasta sauce if used sparingly. And it keeps well in the fridge for several days.

So next time you're in a bind trying to make yourself a meal that is quick and delicious, simple yet satisfying, look no further than roasted asparagus with mustard sauce. You're going to love it. 

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