Eggs, VegetablesAlison Lambert

ASPARAGUS - almost but not quite....

Eggs, VegetablesAlison Lambert
For us down here in the deep south due to cold easterly winds, heavy rain and not enough sunshine the asparagus at Adross Farm in Palmeston is not popping through the ground as it should.  As you are well aware i work pretty closely with the growers as this is how i create the recipes for the market and i have to admit no two days are the same let alone season to season! After speaking with Rodd (grower) i feel the frustration and concern as he is so apologetic that he cannot supply us with his super-fresh, super-crunchy asparagus.  I will give him another ring on Thursday to see the out come for this week but as i have mentioned at the end of the day it is all down to "mother nature".

ASPARAGUS AND THYME FRITTATA
Frittata is quiet simply an Italian omelette. Quick to prepare and great for lunch or as a light dinner. The secret of a good frittata is to make them thinner rather than thicker and to keep it slightly runny in the center!

Serves 2

10 spears asparagus, ends snapped off
4 large free-range eggs
1 tsp fresh thyme or marjoram leaves roughly chopped
Salt and freshly ground pepper
1 Tbsp butter
50g grated parmesan cheese
2 Tbsp crème fraiche
Olive oil

Method
Preheat oven to 200C

Break the eggs in a bowl and lightly beat, season with salt and pepper.

Heat 2 tablespoon of oil in a large oven-proof frypan 18- 20cm. Add the asparagus and cook over a moderate heat until the asparagus starts to lightly colour, sprinkle over half the thyme or marjoram and a light sprinkle of salt and pepper. Remove the asparagus and set aside.

Wipe out the pan with a paper towel and bring back to a moderate-high heat with 2 tablespoons olive oil and the butter, tilting the pan to cover the surface. When the butter starts to froth add the egg mixture and almost immediately add the crème fraiche. Push the mixture carefully from the outside of the pan into the centre using a wooden spoon. When you see the frittata beginning to set, leave it alone so it forms a base. Arrange the asparagus, remaining marjoram, parmesan and a sprinkle of seasoning. Drizzle over a little olive oil and place in the preheated oven for a minute or two.

Remove from the oven. A good frittata must have a crisp edge and slightly runny in the centre.
Loosen the frittata from the pan with a spatula and serve warm with a little more parmesan if desired.