Monday, June 10, 2013

New and Different Side: Crispy Parmesan Asparagus Sticks

I haven't been cooking.  The past couple of weeks have had me losing my mind, and I'm pretty sure the roller coaster is going to continue until school is over.  My back yard is all torn up as we have stairs installed in our pool, along with a new liner.  My cat is shedding like there's no tomorrow, and it's cold.  Bah.
But the last nice weekend that we had, we used our new grilling toys and I needed a side.  I chose this off of Pinterest as something different to go with the kebabs.
J and I both like asparagus.  Usually, I roast it in the oven in a little olive oil, or grill it with a little olive oil.  I'm not super creative when it comes to side or vegetables.  Sometimes, I make the asparagus saute with sausage.  Then asparagus season ends, and we wait until the price is reasonable again.  I will need to add this to the rotation.  Next year.  When the asparagus sprouts again.
I present to you now How Sweet Eats' Crispy Parmesan Asparagus Sticks:

1 bunch asparagus
2 egg whites
1/4 c flour
1 c seasoned panko bread crumbs
1/4 c parmesan cheese (grated, not shredded)

1.  Preheat oven to 425F.  Line a baking sheet with foil and oil.
2.  Clean asparagus, breaking the tough ends from the spears.  Drain and dry.
3.  Beat the egg whites on a plate, and mix flour, panko and cheese on a second plate. 
4.  Working one spear at a time, dip and coat each spear in egg white, and then roll in the panko mixture before setting on the prepared baking sheet.
5.  Bake for 15 minutes, or until golden.
From How Sweet Eats

It is important to dry your asparagus or the egg whites won't stick.   It took me a little while to figure out what the problem was, but things went better after I took a paper towel to the spears. 
I was also afraid that a cup of breadcrumbs was going to be too much, but it really wasn't.
I also didn't use foil or oil.  There has to be a bright side to using stoneware. 
I would like to try this again with thin, young asparagus.  These were lovely, but I think think spears would be yummy too.
Here the spears are golden and ready to be eaten.  We really enjoyed them.  The cheese was a nice addition, and the breadcrumbs were crunchy.  Definitely something we'll need to try again.

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