Asparagus, like potatoes, contains a bitter alkaloid, which is drawn into the water in cooking, and often imparts to it a very unpleasant flavor. This may be remedied by blanching the asparagus in boiling water for four or five minutes. Then drain, and add more hot water, and finish cooking.
Scrape the stalk ends of the asparagus or break off the tough lower stalks as far as they will snap.
Wash well, tie in bundles, and put into enough rapidly-boiling salted water to cover. Allow a tea-spoonful of salt to each quart of water; cook uncovered from twenty to thirty minutes, or till perfectly tender. Drain, remove the string, spread with salt and butter, and serve immediately on toast. The asparagus may be neatly arranged on hot toast and covered with white cream sauce, if preferred.
Wash the asparagus carefully, place in a saucepan of boiling salted water, and boil till done. Take them out and cut into lengths of about two inches, and place on a cloth near the fire to dry. Prepare a little sauce made of lemon juice, butter, yolk of an egg, and salt. Place the asparagus on a dish, over which pour the sauce, and serve.
Break the tender parts of the asparagus into one-inch lengths and put into enough boiling water to cover. Boil till tender; add sufficient rich milk or cream to make a gravy. Thicken with flour, season with salt, let come to a boil, and serve.
Cream, 2 tablespoonfuls.
Butter, 1 tablespoonful.
Cut the tender tops from a bunch of asparagus, and boil about twenty minutes. Then put into a baking-tin with butter and salt. Beat the whites and yolks of the eggs separately, add the cream and pour this over the asparagus. Bake until the eggs are set.
Asparagus, 2 cups.
Peas, 2 cups.
Rich milk or cream.
Break the tender parts of the asparagus into one-inch lengths and put with the peas into boiling water enough to cover. Boil till tender; add sufficient rich milk or cream to make a gravy. Thicken with flour, season with salt, let come to a boil, and serve.