Until recently white asparagus was more common in France than green asparagus. The beginning of the asparagus season is much celebrated and most French restaurants feature them on their menu.
- 6 fat white asparagus spears (see note)
- 2 tsp raspberry vinegar
- 2 tbsp lemon olive oil
- sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 2 cherry tomatoes, finely sliced
- 2 red radishes, finely sliced
- 1 tbsp walnut pieces
- Small handful watercress sprigs
- 60 ml (¼ cup) whipped crème fraîche
- 8 edible flowers
- 1 tbsp finely sliced chives
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
Peel the asparagus spears and remove the hard ends. Cook the asparagus in a saucepan of boiling salted water for 5-10 minutes or until just done. Drain and refresh in iced water. Drain again and pat dry on paper towel.
Place the vinegar, olive oil and a pinch each of salt and pepper in a bowl and whisk to combine. Add the tomatoes, radish and walnuts and toss to coat.
Divide the watercress between 2 plates and top with the asparagus. Spoon the dressing over, top with a spoonful of crème fraiche, a few edible flowers and a sprinkling of chives.
• Select even, firm, white asparagus. Make sure you cut off the hard thick ends. Be gentle with the asparagus while they are cooking to keep them looking nice.
Taste le Tour with Gabriel Gaté starts Saturday 7 July 2018 on SBS and then on SBS On Demand and finishes 29 July 2018. Visit the Taste le Tour website to catch-up on episodes, cook up his recipes or find out more about the series.