Asparagus is a sign that Spring is here in New Zealand and a healthy vege meals is not complete without these super stems. Here are some great asparagus tips for you:

– Snap off the asparagus ends, toss in olive oil and throw on the BBQ until just charred. Sprinkle with pink Himalayan salt  and serve with aioli.

– Sautee asparagus in a hot pan with a little olive oil, garlic and finish with pinenuts and ripped fresh mint leaves. Serve drizzled with lemon Colona (from Sabato).

– Steam asparagus lightly, cool the stems then wrap in fresh, thick, crust-free white bread with a slathering of aioli and freshly cracked pepper. The best asparagus rolls ever!

– Blanch asparagus and wrap with prosciutto. Roll out a slice of bread with a rolling pin and trim off the crusts. Butter one side and the other with cream cheese seasoned with salt and pepper. Place the asparagus on one end of the cream cheese and roll up. Heat a fry pan and fry the asparagus rolls till golden brown.

– Serve cooked asparagus over roast baby beets, orange segments, toasted pumpkin seeds and feta. Make a dressing with Chardonnay vinegar and a good NZ olive oil.

–  Keep all of your stalks and boil in chicken stock with a peeled potato till soft. Zap with a hand blender and blend in a small tub of cream cheese. Season – of course, and serve with warm crusty bread.

– Grill asparagus and toss with grated lemon zest. Place on a well toasted Bruschetta with white bean puree. If you are brave – garnish with an “Ortiz” anchovy!

– To finish, we do need to touch on the fact that asparagus does indeed make your urine smell stronger, some say “funny”. We aren’t sure why or how this amazing reaction happens, but it does, so as you munch in to your amazing asparagus, don’t say you weren’t told! Hence why asparagus is not everyone’s cup of wee… ahem… tea!

For more asparagus inspiration, search ‘asparagus’ above.

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