I had planned on making eggplant stacks.
But, alas, Food Lion – the odious grocery store at which I am sometimes forced to shop due to its proximity to our house – failed me. again. I unwittingly purchased a rotten eggplant.
Asparagus, in this case. I love asparagus season. It is like strawberry season for vegetables; the weather is still reasonably nice and cool, just perfect for browsing asparagus beds for spears of just the right height and maturity and strawberry fields for the berries of the deepest hue. Strawberries every day with breakfast and for snack. Asparagus every evening with supper. Life is good.
Speaking of good things, I recently, finally discovered a grocery store tomato larger than a grape tomato with a decent flavor! I know I am a horrible person for purchasing out of season tomatoes – from a grocery store, no less! – but I really cannot live without fresh tomatoes during the entire winter. I just can not do it. Anyways, these cocktail tomatoes are the best thing ever.
In my opinion, asparagus is most tasty cooked and drizzled in citrus juice of some kind. Sauce is unnecessary. Butter is too much. Olive oil does the trick. The point is to leave the asparagus flavor to speak for itself.
Grill marks make most anything even more appetizing.
Oh, tomatoes. I do love thee.
Cheese, pesto, tomatoes, asparagus, and bread: my favorite foods combined. It could not get much better, unless perhaps some mustard was added. Hmmm.
- 40 spears asparagus
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 2 tablespoons lime juice
- 8 slices whole wheat sandwich bread
- ½ cup pesto
- 12 slices extra sharp cheddar cheese (just buy Cabot; there is nothing better in the US)
- 4 whole cocktail tomatoes
Heat grill to medium heat, 350º to 450ºF.
Rinse asparagus and cut off woody, fibrous ends. In a small bowl combine olive oil with a few dashes each of salt and pepper. Using a basting brush, coat the asparagus spears in olive oil.
Place the asparagus on a grilling tray (to keep them from falling through the grill slats) or perpendicular to the slats on the grill. Grill until softened but not limp (or to your texture preference), about 10 minutes, turning halfway through. After removing them from the grill, drizzle the spears with lime juice.
Brush one side of bread slices with olive oil, and toast slightly on grill. Slice the cocktail tomatoes.
To assemble the sandwiches: spread one slice of bread with 2 tablespoons pesto, place 10 spears of asparagus on top of pesto, and top with slices of an entire cocktail tomato and 3 slices of cheese.
Cut sandwich in half and enjoy!