THE SPARGEL ORGY
That’s right! It’s Spargelzeit (Asparagus time) all over Germany at the moment. The large thick cream coloured asparagus spears are a much loved seasonal specialty and are different than the small thin green asparagus normally available in the United States. In Germany they can be bought in various grades of quality and are peeled with a special knife and then cooked in a mixture of water, wine and broth for about 25 minutes. Usually served with a delicious homemade Hollandaise sauce or clarified butter, together with large grated chips of hard Parmesan cheese, they are eaten with salted boiled potatoes and Parmaschinken (Parma ham) and Rohschinken (cured ham) and complimented with a cooled light dry white wine. For a few weeks, usually in early May, people prepare them at home or enjoy them in the restaurants. Freshly made Spargelcremesuppe (cream of asparagus soup) is also a tasty specialty during the asparagus season. I was invited to partake in this wonderful spring ritual by friends in Bavaria. The asparagus spears were butter soft and had a distinctive and most delicious taste. If you ever get the opportunity to participate in a Spargel orgy, I highly recommend doing so. After all, just like the asparagus, you’re only around for a short time, so why not take advantage of one of the finer things in life. It is also just getting to be strawberry season, but then, that’s another story altogether…
(Photos kindly provided through the courtesy of DiPiero and Associates. I was too busy enjoying the meal to think about taking photos).
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