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Asparagus

Nutrition Benefits

Folate: may lower your risk of heart disease.

Low in calories: helps prevent weight gain.

Low in sodium: may help reduce high blood pressure.

Selection

Choose odorless asparagus stalks with dry, tight tops. Avoid limp or wilted stalks.

Storing

Refrigerate asparagus for up to 4 days by wrapping ends of stalks in a wet paper towel and placing in a plastic bag.

Cleaning

Rinse asparagus under cool running water before cooking.

Preparing

  • Take one asparagus spear and hold it at each end. Bend the asparagus until it snaps—this is the natural break that occurs between the woody end and the tender end.
  • Using your snapped asparagus as a guide, line up the remaining spears of asparagus and using a sharp knife and cutting board, cut the asparagus at the same length of your snapped asparagus.
  • Add cooked asparagus to cooked pasta with other vegetables such as bell peppers and broccoli.
  • Roasted: Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Toss asparagus in a bowl with 1 tablespoon oil. Spread asparagus on a baking sheet and sprinkle with a small amount of salt and pepper. Roast 12 minutes or until tender, stirring halfway through.
  • Grilled: Toss asparagus with 1 tablespoon oil. Lay across the grill and grill on medium-heat until tender. The amount of time will range from 5-9 minutes depending on the thickness of the asparagus. Season with a squeeze of lemon juice or sprinkle with lemon pepper.
  • Steamed: Put asparagus and ½ cup water in a microwave-safe dish with a lid. Microwave on high for 5 minutes and check. Microwave for one minute at a time until the asparagus reaches the texture you like. Sprinkle with your favorite seasoning.

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