White and Green Asparagus with New Onions
White asparagus is simply green asparagus grown underground to prevent photosynthesis. It is usually thicker and smoother than the green stalks. When purchasing, look for firm, pale ivory stalks with tight tips. Cooking time may vary according to thickness; when steaming, choose a couple of spears to use as "testers" for doneness.
- 2 pounds white and/or green asparagus, trimmed, and, if using white, peeled
- 4 spring onions, trimmed, cut in half, and very thinly sliced, or 8 scallions, sliced
- 2 teaspoons sherry wine vinegar
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 3 tablespoons hazelnut oil
- Fleur de Sel (sea salt)
- 1 tablespoon flower blossoms, such as rosemary or chive
Bring water to boil in bottom half of steamer over medium-high heat. Place white asparagus in steamer; cover and cook until tender but not mushy, checking stalks occasionally to be sure they are cooking evenly, 11 to 20 minutes. Remove asparagus from steamer; transfer to clean tea towel. Add green asparagus to steamer; cook until crisp-tender, 3 to 5 minutes. Remove from steamer to clean tea towel.
In small bowl combine onions and vinegar. Whisk in oils in fine stream until thoroughly combined.
Transfer asparagus to serving platter. Drizzle with dressing. Season with fleur de sel. Sprinkle flower blossoms over asparagus. Serve immediately. Makes 6-8 servings.