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Spring has sprung, and so has the asparagus!
Asparagus is a member of the lily family and one of the first veggies to pop up in the spring. It's asparagus season right now here in Ontario, so I'm eating tons of this veggie right now, because not only is it super tasty, but it's got tons of health benefits:
Most asparagus is green, but you can also find white and purple. White asparagus is more tender, but lacks the nutritious chlorophyll that makes standard asparagus green. Purple asparagus is smaller, but has an extra super-nutritious antioxidant: anthocyanins (the same nutrient that makes dark berries an antioxidiant powerhouse).
There are lots of healthy ways to cook asparagus; you can blanch it, steam it or stir-fry it, but one of my favourite ways is to oven roast it, which helps retain lots of those health-boosting nutrients.
I'm so excited about asparagus season that I'm going to share my asparagus recipe from my book Joyous Health: Eat and Live Well Without Dieting up here on the blog because I want everyone to have it!
You may be surprised to see grapeseed oil rather than olive oil in this recipe. I love extra virgin olive oil for lots of things, but the phytonutrients in this oil are really delicate, and if exposed to too much heat, they can smoke and oxidize. Grapeseed oil is far better at standing up to the heat of roasting, so save the EVOO for salads and use grapeseed oil when you want to turn up the heat!
What seasonal spring foods are you excited to start seeing at the farmer's market? Let me know in the comments below!