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March 2008 Issue
Bringing Spring to the Table
by Ronda L. Halpin
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March brings a lot of new flavors to your marketplace and a festive spring brunch is an excellent way to showcase them. This month, I'm sharing a recipe for fresh asparagus combined with poached eggs. It's a great centerpiece for a brunch. Round out the meal with a green salad, scones of your favorite variety and some fresh fruit. Add juices and coffee and you've got a spread that is sure to impress!

What makes this month's recipe a particularly great one for spring is the combination of fresh asparagus, which is at its peak right now, and perfectly poached eggs. If you are vegetarian, you can easily skip the bacon in this recipe, although it does add a smoky touch to the dish. If you opt to skip the bacon, consider sprinkling a little smoked paprika over the eggs and along the edges of the platter before serving. Happy Spring!

 

Asparagus and Poached Eggs

  • 12 slices thick-cut bacon
  • 3 T. unsalted butter
  • 2 T. fresh sage leaves
  • 2 pounds asparagus
  • 8 eggs
  • ½ fresh lemon
Fry the bacon over medium heat until crispy. Remove from the pan and drain on paper towels. When it's cool, break the bacon into ½” - 1” pieces and set aside.

Place the butter and sage in a saucepan over low heat, allowing it to bubble until it's golden brown. Keep warm.

Trim the ends from the asparagus and steam until tender.

While the asparagus is steaming, fill a frying pan with about 2 inches of water and bring to a boil. When the water boils, turn off the heat. When the water quits bubbling, place the eggs in the water one at a time (you may need to do two batches). Cover the pan and let it sit for 3 to 4 minutes, until the whites are set but the yolks are still soft.

Place the asparagus on a warm serving plate. Lightly squeeze the lemon over the asparagus. Place the poached eggs on top of the asparagus. Top with the brown butter and crispy sage. Sprinkle some of the bacon over the center of the eggs and place remaining bacon around the edges of the serving plate.

Serve immediately.

  • Yields: 8 servings
  • Preparation Time: 30 minutes
 



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