Asparagus is healthy, doesn't make you fat - if you hold back on the hollandaise sauce - and is a German vegetable that's in season now. Therefore, in the merry month of May, a suggestion to plaster the noble sticks with something other than schnitzel or potatoes.
It's May and with the rising temperatures, the asparagus are sprouting in the fields. Now is the best time to eat the "royal vegetables". In order to start the asparagus harvest in April, the fields are heated with warm water pipes, which is ecologically very questionable. Therefore one should wait until the beginning of May. This is not only good for nature, but also for your wallet.
Asparagus is healthy, as the ancient Chinese already knew, and used it to treat all sorts of illnesses. Asparagus came to our region with the Romans and it soon became apparent that German soil was particularly well suited to growing it. Today nobody denies that the best asparagus comes from Germany.
In order to do something different with the noble vegetables, I have put together the following:
While freshly baking puff pastry pies is a challenge, the taste doesn't compare to store-bought pies. For the sake of simplicity, however, we use deep-frozen starting products.
Preheat the oven to 200 degrees (top/bottom heat). Peel the asparagus and cut off 1 cm at the ends. Bring 3/4 liter of water to a boil with a tablespoon of sugar and a teaspoon of salt. Cut the asparagus spears diagonally into approx. 2 cm pieces and place in the boiling stock. Boil briefly, cover immediately and leave to infuse.
Mix the egg. Cut out the thawed sheets of dough into as many 8 cm circles as possible. Form three circles into a pie by cutting out two smaller circles and building the resulting rings with the egg on the third circle. Brush all the pieces of dough (including the small circles) with an egg and bake on baking paper for about 25 minutes until golden brown.
Boil the peas in salted water until soft. Drain and puree hot in a blender or with an immersion blender with vegetable stock or cream. Season with salt and pepper.
Check the degree of doneness of the asparagus. Reheat if necessary. Pour the stock into a saucepan and bring to the boil. Thicken with cornstarch mixed with cold water and season with nutmeg and salt. If you like, you can add a good dash of cream. The asparagus ragout should not be too runny, otherwise the pies will soften quickly.
Arrange the still warm pies on a hot plate, fill with plenty of asparagus ragout and garnish with herbs. Place the mushy peas along with the baked circles and serve immediately.
Even if it takes some practice. The pies can be used in a variety of recipes and will delight your guests or family.
The remains of the dough can be mixed with cheese and baked into cheese biscuits. Bon Appetit!
(This article was first published on Thursday, May 12, 2022.)