Sunday, February 1, 2009

Imperial Asparagus


Friends, I have really been remiss in keeping my blog up to date. For this, I apologize. I didn't expect for the year 2009 to become as busy as I am now. But I'm not complaining. I like to be busy but I am in that period where I am still adjusting, trying to juggle my time in the hope of achieving a proper balance, so that I'd have time left to upload photos and write my blogs. So, please be patient with me.

I'm sure everyone agrees that food blogging is time consuming - the cooking, the photography set-up, shooting, uploading and then writing.. all these require a chunk of our time.

Then, there are times when your food has been photographed and uploaded, and yet you stare at the computer screen not knowing what to write about. Have you had that exprience? I'm sure you did. Isn't that frustrating?


Anyway, enough of my venting.

This week's Lasang Pinoy's theme is STEAMED. I have done Siomai (pork wanton dumplings) and Siopao (steamed buns) before so I can't post that here anymore. But, I do steam a lot - my veggies, especially. I prefer steaming because we all know that it is much healthier to do so, than blanching them in hot water. Steaming preserves more the vegetables' nutrients.

One of the favorite veggie I steam is Asparagus. I do like to roast them too, but since steaming is quicker, then I steam it most of the time. It is an excellent side dish to any entree you have, be it pork, fish or poultry.

As you can see here, I served the asparagus with roasted sweet potatoes ("kamote", as they're called in my native tongue) with caramelized onion, and chicken breasts simply roasted with extra-virgin olive oil, salt, pepper and herbs de Provence. This is a meal that is straightforward, but healthy and satisfying.

This my entry to Lasang Pinoy Sundays: Steamed.
Lasang Pinoy is weekly food photography meme, Filipino style.


Imperial Asparagus (serves 4)
2lbs of green or white asparagus, steamed
3 tablespoons of butter
3 tablespoons of flour
1 cup chicken stock
1/2 cup white wine
4 tablespoons heavy whipping cream
dash of hot sauce or ground cayenne pepper (optional)
salt and pepper
pinch of sugar

1. Trim the asparagus and peel the stalks to the tips.
2. Steam asparagus for 5-7 minutes (depending on how you like them. I like them crunchy still so I don't leave them that long)
3. Make the sauce. Melt the butter in a heavy based pan, in medium high heat.
4. Lower heat heat and stir in the flour. Stir with a wire whisk, for 1 minute to cook the flour a bit.
5. Gradually add the white wine and the stock. Stir until smooth then place over a low heat. Bring to the boil stirring constantly, until sauce thickens.
6. Add the cream and a dash of ground cayanne pepper, if preferred.
7. Now add the salt and pepper and a pinch of sugar, to taste.

Note*: My sauce didn't come out white because I cooked it in the same pan where I cooked my chicken, so I can have the chicken flavor in it. But if you've have guests, you might want to cook the sauce in a clean pan, so your sauce can come out white as it should be. Also, I added cayenne pepper because I wanted the kick. And lastly, I also added a dash of sweet paprika on top, as garnish.


Fearless Kitchen said...

This looks tasty! It's a sauce I haven't tried with asparagus before. Steaming is such a good and convenient method for cooking asparagus!

Grace said...

i hit the blogger's wall all the time, but i've been able to power through so far. hang in there! :)
great plate of food, by the way. ya done good. :)

Mirage said...

Yaay! You finally updated! :D I check here sometimes to see what's cooking pero you really seem to be very busy...

Anyway, your asparagus looks really fresh...speaking of fresh, thats what we need to write something anew. Refresh lang ng refresh :D Enjoy the week!

thess said...

Amen to all those things you mentioned about keeping a food blog. But it sure feels nice to have an update after a drought =)

Fantastic yummy captures! How I wish asparagus is in season right now, you made me want to steam some!

mikky said...

that's one great meal you created, and the veggies look so inviting... :)

Z'riz said...

Wow! That looks delish! I don't like asparagus tho... but the chicken and sweet potatoes are yummy!

maiylah said...

yummy!!! healthy treat. :)
such vibrant colors!

Mochachocolata Rita said...

i love asparagus and this sauce sounds great! i havent tried this before :)

Tangled Noodle said...

I love asparagus and I've been wanting to do more steaming. Thanks for this! (And I totally know what you mean about keeping up with the blog - I'm trying to aim for just 2/week and even that's sometimes tough!)

Munchkin Mommy said...

i totally agree with you! food blogging is a lot of work...and worth a lot of calories, too! haha!

i should just go on a strict steamed food diet. :D then again, where's the fun in that? hee hee. :)

Julie said...

Wow. My eldest daughter loves asparagus and we always use this with chicken strips instead of beef.

Steamed would be good and I can just imagine that she will be delighted with this dish.

Kevin said...

That asparagus looks good and so does the sweet poatato with caramelized onions.

Dhanggit said...

asparagus is one of my fave veggie :-) too bad during winter we cant enjoy them unless they are imported :-( love the photo makes me hungry!!and what a great entry too for LP!

Cynthia said...

Oh yes, I know that food blogging is time consuming and there needs to be balance if not it can become a chore and task and that is when you know you are in danger.

We Are Never Full said...

i'm with you sistah! food blogging is awesome but so annoying sometimes. you start to feel guilty if you let too much time slip by w/o posting but then you feel bad if you write something boring. well, at least i do. but it's important to remember that it's supposed to be fun....


ces said...

running out of words is my current dilemma in blogging! haha! anyway, i heart asparagus any which way cooked:)

liza said...

wow! that looks good!

iska said...

Love, love, love the photos! The combination of chicken and asparagus is definitely YUM.
And I can totally relate when it comes to food blogging. I have lots of food photos all waiting...