Asparagus is Best Preserved
In some areas, asparagus has a bad reputation, almost like Brussels sprouts or Lima beans. But I’m here to tell you it’s a kick-butt super-food and when prepared well, it is absolutely delicious! You can boil it, steam it, roast it, grill it, pickle it, or pressure can it!
So Many Colors
Not to mention, have you seen the fun colors it grows in? Sure, green, but we see a lot of green on our plates when we are eating healthy. If you’re looking for some fun in your meal, try the purple or white varieties and experience the different flavors. White, for instance, has simply been kept from sunlight, however its flavor is said to lean toward that of artichoke hearts more than asparagus, which is generally clean, crisp, and earthy. Purple, on the other hand, has a very similar flavor to green, and is packed full of anthocyanins, which not only gives it the vibrant color but helps protect the body against any radical and damaging cells.
It’s So Healthy Too
Asparagus is also known for being able to help ease a hangover, keep your urinary tract happy, and even help you lose weight! It’s high in potassium, folic acid, fiber, vitamins A, B6, C, and thiamine. It’s also super low in sodium and contains no fat.
If that’s convincing enough but you’re concerned about how to include asparagus in your diet, no worries. It’s so easy. Here is a simple, and delicious, pickling recipe so you may preserve fresh asparagus and use them as condiments to salad, serve alongside sandwiches and even as an appetizers if your guests are enjoying an ice cold beer. And if enjoying an alcoholic beverage, plunk a spear or two into your Bloody Mary! YUM! If pickling has its limitation in your home, not to worry, pressure canning asparagus is sure to provide a tasty side dish or a base for making creamed asparagus soup.
Preserving the Harvest
Savoring an asparagus’ flavor year round has so many benefits. In fact, the Romans enjoyed it so much they would send runners into the Alps to store the asparagus frozen for six months! While running to the mountains might be a good back up plan, I highly suggest canning it!
Have I piqued your interest at all? If so, let’s get going! Oh, and make sure to get the good stuff when headed to the nearest grocer or farmers market! The best asparagus will be bright green and firm. Look for green or violet-tinged spears (tops), and hold the bunch in your hand. Squeeze a sec. Did it squeak almost like a rubber duck? If so, great! That’s what you’re looking for.
Now to get home and start canning!
Diane, The Canning Diva®