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Asparagus season is here! Asparagus is one of my favorite vegetables. I eat tons of it when it's in season. It's so simple to prepare and makes a quick, tasty side dish to just about anything. Or, you can mix it into scrambled eggs or a frittata. Heaven!
One interesting thing to note is that asparagus has a very high respiration rate, compared to other vegetables. The respiration rate is a metabolic activity that continues after a vegetable is picked. It's the breakdown of starches and sugars and this results in releasing carbon dioxide. The respiration rate of asparagus is five time higher than potatoes and onions, three times higher than tomatoes and lettuce, and twice as high as avocados and cauliflower. The key with asparagus is to eat it as fresh as you can. If you can get it at your farmers market, freshly picked, that's best. Take it home and prepare it right away, or at least within 48 hours.
Asparagus is very high in vitamins K, C, A and B, as well as folate. It has been shown to help regulate blood sugar and help with heart health due to the high levels of vitamin B. Also, since it has a strong anti-inflammatory antioxidant nutrient composition, it has been shown to have anti-cancer benefits. I can't even begin to list all of the benefits of asparagus. It's truly one of those awesome, miracle veggies.
Simple Garlicky Asparagus Spears
I'm putting rough measurements on this recipe, simply for the fact that you can just adjust everything to your taste. Some people will like more garlic, some less. Some like more salt, some like less. Make it to fit your tastes.
- 1 large bunch of asparagus, washed, snapped and cut in half
- 1 teaspoon to 1 tablespoon chopped garlic
- Fresh ground black pepper
- Sprinkle of salt
- Butter or Coconut oil
- Lime or lemon for squeezing over spears before serving
- Melt the oil or butter in a large skillet and add the garlic and stir it into the oil.
- Toss the asparagus in there and stir around to coat the stalks.
- Cover and cook for 5-10 minutes or until they are just al dente with a teeny bit of crunch left. I like mine so they are still firm. That way when I reheat any leftovers, it doesn't turn to mush!
- Serve with butter and lime or lemon juice.
Source: The World's Healthiest Foods, “Asparagus“