Tuesday 10 April 2012

Asparagus Fries with garlic aioli! Skagit Valley Tulip Festival!

Skagit Valley tulips 
Photo by José Mandojana

Twirl around tulip fields 

Spring is the right time to catch Skagit Valley's colorful crop of tulips in bloom. Celebrate at the area's annual tulip festival, then rent a bike and take to the road, exploring the valley while stopping for photo ops of the rainbow-striped flowering fields before you.
 Washington's Skagit Valley in April: To stand before fields of intensely colored flowers—cherry red, navel orange, pure white—that blanket the area. 

Month-long party: The Skagit Valley Tulip Festival (Apr 1–30). 

Fit for: Flower fiends, but even if you don’t know a tulip from a rose, the display will blow you away. 

Lay of the land: A patchwork of bulb fields stretching from Mt. Vernon and Burlington to La Conner.
Number of growers: 3 
Number of bulbs they produce: 200 million
Number of cut flowers produced: 97 million
Percent of nation’s commercial tulip crop produced: 75


1 bundle of asparagus, cleaned and trimmed, uniform in size
2 egg whites
1 c. Panko bread crumbs
1/4 c. flour
1/2 c. grated Parmesan
salt and pepper to taste


1 egg
1 egg yolk
1 tsp. dijon mustard
2 T. fresh lemon juice
1 c. grapeseed oil (olive oil can sub, but has a stronger flavor)
3 cloves of garlic, minced
salt and pepper to taste

For the asparagus: Preheat oven to 425 F. Line a baking sheet with silpat or parchment paper.

Separate the egg yolks from the whites in a bowl and whisk the whites.
*Reserve one of the yolks for the mayo
In another bowl add panko, flour, grated parmesan, salt and pepper. Combine.
Roll a few of the asparagus in the egg whites, drain off any excess and roll them in the panko mixture to coat. Place on prepared pan and repeat with remaining asparagus.

Pop the sheet of asparagus into the preheated oven and bake for 15-20 minutes, flip, halfway through. Bake until golden, slightly cool and serve.

In a processor (can be mini), add a whole egg, the egg yolk, 1 tsp dijon and 1 T. lemon juice. Process on high. Slowly stream in the grapeseed oil, through the tiny holes in the lid of your processor, (this is a slow process) while running. Remove the lid, add the remaining lemon juice, the garlic and season with slat and pepper. Blend until smooth.

*The aoili can be made and stored in a air tight glass jar and refrigerated.

  *Aioli-There are many variations, such as the addition of mustard or, in Catalonia, pears. It is usually served at room temperature. The name aioli (alhòli)  This is a mayonnaise sauce, an emulsion sauce.

These disappeared quickly! We had four appetizers, for nine guests, it all vanisihed!! One guest was heard saying, "Oh, I need to taste this with the Mer Soleil, I need to taste that, with the Mer Soleil!" We had three bottles of the Mer Soleil!! Then we moved onto the reds! Mer Soleil available at wine on the way, icon on right column. This wine was reviewed on yesterday's blog.

Hahaha! Our Easter Bunny, TT! Love it!!


  1. What a cute TT with easter bunny ears!! Love him so much!

    The Mer Soleil was a delightful wine and enjoyed with all three appies served. It was best paired with the artichoke cheese dip I think. Are you going to share that recipe on the blog?

  2. I found the recipe for the brie and artichoke on your blog post prior to this one...catching up! ;-)

    1. Oh good Amy! it flew out, good one, even without the aioli!!

    2. He jumped right in, providing entertainment for cocktail hour. He is going to be an amazing Dad! I am so very proud of him and you!


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