rosemary & parmesan crusted asparagus

April 28th, 2009

It’s that happy time of year again here in New York when green things start arriving at the greenmarket. Asparagus is one of those gems and I decided it was time to give the little green spears a chance. I’ve tried them here and there, but they just never really did it for me. Then one day Aaron and I had lunch at Spitzer’s and we kept seeing these plates come out with the most delicious looking golden rods. We quickly ordered ourselves a plate and wouldn’t you know, I became a fan of asparagus. They were rolled in bread crumbs and sesame seeds, then fried and served with a buttery lemon dipping sauce. I mean come on, what’s not to like? With that on my mind, I decided to try my own version of the crusted asparagus to see if I had what it takes to make asparagus appetizing.

Instead of using sesame seeds I decided to go the herbal route and use some fresh rosemary I had on hand. I combined that with a bunch of breadcrumbs and some freshly grated parmesan cheese. I first blanched my asparagus to ensure that it was cooked, because I wasn’t sure that frying it would do the trick. Once the asparagus had cooked for a few minutes I put it in an ice bath, patted it dry and then started the coating process.

I prepared 3 plates, one with flour, one with a whisked egg and the last with the breadcrumb mixture. I coated each spear with with each, one after the other until they were all coated and lovely. Next I prepared a pan with enough oil to cover the bottom of the pan. Once it was hot enough, I placed the spears in it and let them brown. While the first side was getting nice and crispy, I squeezed a lemon and added the fresh lemon juice to some melted butter to use as my dipping sauce. When the first side was nice and golden, I flipped the asparagus to get the other side equally as crispy.

When they were all cooked, I laid them all on a paper towel for a minute or two to let the excess oil drain off. Then it was the moment of truth. Would all that work be worth it? I have to say yes, although next time I’d make more because they were delicious, but it was a bit much for only a few spears of asparagus. I loved the flavor that the rosemary added and the extra crunch of the bread crumbs. Oh, and that citrus butter dipping sauce was good stuff. Now I’m off to conquer more veggie fears!

rosemary & parmesan crusted asparagus
makes 1 bunch of asparagus (about 12 spears)

1 bunch of asparagus
1 cup bread crumbs
1 tablespoon fresh rosemary, finely chopped
2 tablespoons parmesan, finely grated
1 egg
1/2 cup flour
1 lemon, juiced
2 tablespoons butter, melted

Fill a bowl with ice water and set aside. Bring a medium pot of water to boil and cook asparagus, 3 minutes for thin spears, 5 minutes for large spears. Immediately place asparagus in ice water.
Combine breadcrumbs, rosemary and parmesan and spread on a large plate.
Whisk egg and place in a large bowl or sided pan.
Spread flour on a plate and create a prep station so you have the flour plate, egg bowl and breadcrumb plate in a row.
Pour enough vegetable oil in a large frying pan so it completely covers the bottom. Place over medium heat.
Take the first asparagus spear and coat 4-5 inches of the stalk with flour (it may take a few rolls). Next dip it in the egg mixture, then coat it in bread crumbs. Repeat with all asparagus spears.
Place the asparagus in the hot oil and cook for about 3 minutes on each side, or until each side is golden.
Melt about butter in a small bowl. Squeeze the juice of 1 lemon and add to the bowl.
Serve asparagus with lemon butter dipping sauce.

Comments: 21 Total

  1. maggie (p&c)

    April 28, 2009 at 8:32 am

    What a great idea! Have never had breaded asparagus but these look divine! Fresh local in-season asparagus is a special thing…you might try roasting it in a hot oven and grilling it. A bit easier but it gets all caramelized and delicious.

  2. Tiernan

    April 28, 2009 at 8:05 pm

    I love asparagus naked, but this just looks so fabulous.

  3. Honeybee

    April 29, 2009 at 2:24 am

    I’ve never eaten asparagus like this, it looks wonderful!

  4. tonic

    April 29, 2009 at 8:52 am

    I love asparagus, and those look fantastic! I must try this!

  5. amy

    April 29, 2009 at 10:31 am

    oh wow! gotta tell my mum abt this or i’ll make this!! ha. my brothers hate vegs and this might change their mind:P

  6. Carolyn

    April 29, 2009 at 11:58 am

    What a good idea! These would be great as a passed hors d’oeuvre — a fresher alternative to the ubiquitous prosciutto-wrapped asparagus spear.

    My mom used to serve steamed asparagus topped with breadcrumbs browned in a little butter as an everyday side dish. It’s one of those combinations that’s just so much better than the sum of its parts. With a little minced rosemary tossed into the breadcrumbs and a squeeze of lemon on top, it’d basically be the lazy man’s version of this recipe, in case you’re ever craving the flavor combo but don’t feel like dealing with dredging.

  7. Cathy - wheresmydamnanswer

    April 29, 2009 at 2:19 pm

    I have made a variation of these before and they are so DAMN good. I use panko bread crumbs and they are so tasty!!

  8. Sara

    April 29, 2009 at 3:05 pm

    Wow, those look fantastic! Great idea!

  9. jenn

    April 30, 2009 at 8:40 pm

    I’ve never had it like this and sounds AMAZING I’m going to give it a whirl!! thanks!

  10. Pingback: May Food Letter | Macheesmo

    May 6, 2009 at 6:42 am
  11. Kristi

    May 6, 2009 at 8:27 pm

    I wish I’d read this one before I steamed my fresh Michigan asparagus tonite;-) Will try version this within a week!

  12. My Taste Heaven

    May 10, 2009 at 2:55 am

    What we usually could order from the restaurants here is stir fried asparagus with scallop. This is a new way to serve asparagus.

  13. wilsonian

    June 22, 2009 at 9:20 pm

    I tried this tonight. Even with the mistake I made (read the recipe too quickly, and mixed the flour in with the other dry ingredients), it still turned out well. I don’t like asparagus, and I ate the whole thing myself. I can see using the same breading with other veggies… like maybe slicing cauliflower instead of breaking it up… ooooh.


  14. fresh365

    June 23, 2009 at 3:37 pm

    These look amazing! I hope I can still find fresh asparagus and don’t have to hold off until next year!

  15. Pingback: Rosemary and Parmesan Crusted Asparagus « Cook Local

    August 2, 2009 at 1:37 am
  16. Pingback: Food – Delicious Things To Do With Rosemary | Everything Cool

    April 26, 2013 at 1:24 am

    February 14, 2015 at 4:54 am

    oooh – yum! off to pin! I heart rosemary.

  18. Pingback: 36 Reasons To Grow Rosemary At Home | IFA Country Stores

    April 16, 2015 at 11:17 am
  19. Pingback: 36 Reasons To Grow Your Own Rosemary | IFA Country Stores

    May 4, 2015 at 9:20 am
  20. Pingback: 39 Delicious Things To Do With Rosemary | Viral Investor

    May 31, 2016 at 11:28 pm
  21. Pingback: 39 Delicious Things To Do With Rosemary | My Blog

    May 18, 2017 at 4:27 am

Leave a Reply