4 large potatoes, steamed whole and peeled (approx. 800g)
2 cups plain flour
1 egg yolk
1 bunch asparagus, ends trimmed and cut in thirds
1 cup frozen peas
Juice and zest of one lemon
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil + extra
1 tbs salt
salt and pepper for seasoning
Parmesan to taste
Mash or rice the potatoes. Add the salt and yolk and combine with a spoon. Add ½ the flour and fold through the potato with the spoon. Then tip out onto a floured bench and add remaining flour and gently knead potato and flour together. It will remain quite sticky, this is normal. If it's overly sticky, add some extra flour and knead again.
Sprinkle some more flour over the bench and divide dough into 6 equal portions. Roll each portion into a sausage shape and cut 1-2cm chunks from the sausage. Once you've rolled and cut all your gnocchi, heat a large non-stick frypan on medium and add olive oil.
Add gnocchi, in batches, and cook on each side until golden brown and crispy.
Remove last batch of gnocchi from pan and add asparagus, peas and a good splash of extra virgin olive oil. Saute for 2-3 minutes then add gnocchi, lemon, salt, and pepper. Saute for another minute or so and serve with parmesan.
Spring has sprung and so has Australian asparagus. Fresh, crisp and delicious spears will be available nationwide from early September.
Asparagus farmers say the season is looking promising thanks to warmer winter temperatures and late rainfall across all growing regions, which has produced an abundant crop of great quality spears.
Australian asparagus grower and President of the Australian Asparagus Council Alex Motta is excited for the season to start and says there are a couple of tips for Aussies to keep in mind when picking crisp and juicy spears.
"We've had higher temperatures this winter than previous years, which has meant our crop has thrived and we're thrilled to be bringing this season's harvest of delicious, crisp asparagus for all Australians to enjoy."
"Shoppers should keep an eye out for asparagus that are bright, smooth and uniform in size with closed, compact tips. That way they know their asparagus will be firm and moist," said Mr Motta.
"To keep your asparagus fresher for longer, you can store them like fresh cut flowers. Stand them upright in the fridge in a glass with a splash of cold water or wrap them in a damp towel and place them in the crisper."
This versatile veggie can be enjoyed for breakfast, lunch, dinner or even as a snack – Australian asparagus is tender and luscious with a herbaceous and earthy flavour profile, adding a unique flavour and texture to every day meals.
"Fresh, locally-grown spears can be enjoyed in many different ways and can boost the health profile of everyday meals. Cook some spears on the BBQ, toss them through a stir-fry, roast them in the oven, blanch, steam or boil or even eat them raw to make the most of them while they are in season," said Mr Motta.
Spring into health with Aussie asparagus
Australian asparagus has a well-balanced health profile and is a delicious addition to your diet. Just one serve of asparagus (3-4 spears or 75g) contains:
• B vitamins: such as thiamin, riboflavin, niacin and biotin, which helps enzymes metabolise food
• Folate: One serve of asparagus provides 22% of an adult's daily needs. Folate is particularly important for normal cell division and tissue formation during pregnancy
• Vitamin C: One serve of asparagus provides a quarter of our daily needs of vitamin C. It helps absorb iron in the diet and it's important for a healthy, functioning immune system
• Potassium: Essential for a steady heartbeat and healthy blood pressure
• Iron: Assists the flow of oxygen around the body
• Low in kilojoules: Asparagus has no cholesterol, virtually no fat and only 67 kilojoules per serve
Did you know? Asparagus spears are cut by hand, usually at night and early morning when it's cooler in order to retain maximum freshness. In ideal temperatures, the spears can grow as quickly as 1 cm every hour, meaning the spear can grow fully overnight!