There are so many different ways you can prepare and eat asparagus and that’s one of my favourite things about it. You can have it sautéed, blanched, raw, with cheese, wrapped in bacon, the list goes on. On top of that, you can cook it on a grill, on the stove, in a microwave, in a pan, on a bbq or in the oven. In this article, we will be taking a closer look at how you can successfully be cooking asparagus inside an oven to make yourself a delicious healthy snack in no time at all! Although not essential I highly recommend you wrap at least some of your asparagus stalks in bacon and sprinkle it with salt and pepper as it makes it so much better!
If you can get your hands on chilli infused olive oil then try cooking your asparagus with that too as it adds a nice little twist to it! One of the main advantages of cooking asparagus in an oven is that you can literally place the asparagus on the oven tray, place it into the oven and then carry on with other tasks for the meal where as other methods such as grilling or BBQing require you to baby sit the asparagus as it cooks.
Advantages Of Cooking Your Asparagus In The Oven
Additionally, you are also able to have more control over the end product, people enjoy their asparagus in different ways. Some like it to be well done, some like it with crispy ends and others prefer it tender. When cooking it in the oven it is relatively easy to get your asparagus exactly how you want it as the oven is at a set temperature. We hope as you are reading this article it helps you understand the answer to the question cooking asparagus inside an oven.
Oven Cooking Asparagus Tips
Firstly set your oven temperature to 425F, while the oven warms up cut any dry ends off your asparagus using a sharp knife. If there are any “woody ends” then cut those off too and discard them.
Place your prepped asparagus on your baking trey and lightly drizzle with your favourite cooking oil. Personally, I like to use some form of olive oil, my favourite is olive oil with chilli but it is, unfortunately, becoming increasingly difficult to get hold of. Once drizzled sprinkle salt, pepper and paprika generously over your asparagus.
Although not essential sometimes at this stage I will wrap my asparagus in bacon. Although cooking times do change depending on how you like your asparagus I then leave it in the oven to cook at a steady temperature for around 20 minutes.
Cooking Asparagus On The Grill
Although some people are slightly put off by cooking asparagus on the grill due to it developing small burned bits it is an easy way to quickly prepare this healthy snack.
Simply place your asparagus on a plate and drizzle it with your favourite cooking oil, in my opinion, the healthier the oil the better. Roll the spears over a few times on the plate to ensure they have oil on them all the way around each spear.
Next place the asparagus on your grill trey and put it under your grill, leave it for around give minutes to cook but be sure to roll each speak every minute or so to ensure each side gets a fair amount of direct exposure to heat. After a short while some of the tips on the heads will begin to turn a brownish colour, this is not the asparagus burning but the sugars inside beginning to caramelise.
After the five minutes is up remove from the grill and serve as soon as possible as the caramelised sugars taste particularly delicious while hot. I also find that picking at the charred asparagus with your bare hands rather than a knife and folk somehow seems to enhance the experience and make it more enjoyable.
Cooking Asparagus On Stove Top
Another easy way to prepare asparagus is on the stove top, simply melt butter in a frying pan on the stove over a medium heat. Add some olive oil, paprika, salt, pepper and crushed garlic and leave for a minute.
Add your asparagus to the frying pan and cook for around ten minutes. Again be sure to turn the asparagus every minute or so to ensure the whole spear is directly exposed to the heat as well as making sure the oils and spices attach to the whole spear.
Cooking Asparagus In The Microwave
Although you can cook asparagus in the microwave, it is my least favourite way to prepare this healthy food and I personally try to cook it using other methods if I can help it.
Lay a paper towel on your work top in the kitchen and lightly spray it with water. Lay some sticks of asparagus on the towels and then gently sprinkle some salt and pepper over them. Roll up your paper towels into a small roll ensuring the asparagus sticks remain in the middle of the roll. Gently spray the rolled up paper towels one more time.
Place in the microwave and cook on high for four minutes, your asparagus spears should be crispy while the stalk remains tender. Be aware that it will be extremely hot so try to use tongs to get your dish out of the microwave if possible.
Cooking Asparagus On BBQ
This is my favourite method to cook asparagus, especially in the summer time when entertaining, in all honesty, it is very similar to my grilling suggestion above but, this time, I highly recommend you wrap your asparagus in bacon before placing it on the BBQ.
Bacon wrapped asparagus is one of my own personal favourite foods and I highly recommend your try it at least once!
Images used with a creative commons licence – https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/
Image One by Liz West – https://www.flickr.com/photos/calliope/6251277/
Image Two by Jeremy Keith – https://www.flickr.com/photos/adactio/484146055/
Image Three by Jareed – https://www.flickr.com/photos/jareed/6781339760/