Vegetables are a necessary part to every meal, and some are welcome additions to meals both simple and elaborate. Asparagus is one such vegetable, as it can be boiled, steamed, baked and broiled, and still retains its hardy flavor. The trick in preparing vegetables comes from the balance between cooking them sufficiently and not cooking them so long that they lose their vitality and long. Many boiled veggies don't retain their nutrients, so other cooking methods must be used. One popular way in doing so is roasting, as the vegetable is cooked without losing any flavor or nutrition. Only a few steps are necessary in preparing this and many other vegetables.
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Gather your necessary ingredients: olive oil, (extra virgin or regular depending on taste), garlic or garlic salt, lemon and lemon pepper. Depending on your personal taste or health restrictions, use garlic instead of garlic salt. Preheat your oven to 325 degrees.
If preparing an entire bundle of asparagus, use a sizable baking dish. Pour a ½ cup of olive oil into the dish and allow it to cover the entire container. Add a teaspoon of garlic salt and lemon pepper (or one chopped clove of garlic and two teaspoons of lemon.
Take a plastic utensil and distribute the ingredients evenly, mixing with the olive oil.Chop off the bottom two inches of stem (the hardened section) and wash the asparagus thoroughly.
Pat the asparagus dry and roll each stem in the baking dish. Roll two or three times/stem, allowing the dry ingredients to adhere to the stem. The olive oil provides a coating allowing them to do so.
After all have been rolled through the mixture, arrange them in the bowl, one on top of the other. (Asparagus are thin enough that heat will radiate through to those below). Place your pan in the oven for 10-15 minutes, depending on the desired crispiness. If the asparagus are still too tough for your taste, lower the heat to 250 and allow to roast/bake an additional 10 minutes.
Remove it from the heat and allow the asparagus to cool. Serve with melted butter or a small amount of sour cream. Add a few chopped chive pieces to the sour cream for a tangy mix, if desired.
This dish also makes great leftovers. Simply cover and refrigerate, and in warming again, choose a 250 degrees for 10 to 15 minutes. If cooked too long or on too high a temperature, the asparagus will dry out. If desired, skip this step completely, as it also tastes great cold.