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Sautéed Asparagus with Hard-Cooked Egg Garnish

Serves 4

I love asparagus. It is terrific raw, steamed, sautéed, in salads and in casseroles. Fresh asparagus used to be available only in spring, when it is at its best, but now can be found throughout the year. This recipe is a quick, easy and healthy side dish that highlights the flavor of asparagus without overpowering it. The egg garnish is optional, but goes very well with the asparagus. This recipe can be made in any amount needed.

Sauteed Asparagus Recipe Photo

Wash and trim asparagus, being certain to remove the tough ends. Heat a medium-sized skillet, large enough to hold the spears in one or two layers, over medium heat. Add the olive oil and garlic and sauté for one minute, being careful not to brown. Add asparagus with tips facing one direction. Season with salt and pepper. Cover and cook until tender, about 15 minutes, adding a little water if it starts to brown. (Cooking time will vary according to size and tenderness of asparagus). Remove lid and simmer until any added water has evaporated. Place cooked asparagus on serving dish and garnish with egg slices. Serve immediately if you want it hot, but it is just as good at room temperature.

Notes: Most recipes will tell you to buy young, tender asparagus. That does not necessarily mean that the thinner spears are the most tender. More often than not, I find it to be the opposite. No matter how small or large, the tough part of the stem end must be removed, which is easily accomplished by gently bending the spear until it snaps. Make certain that the tips look fresh and compact. If you buy asparagus before you need to use it, it can be stored in the refrigerator for several days, tips upright in a container of shallow water, just enough to cover the bottom of the stalks, and covered with plastic wrap.