Today is a day to herald and celebrate much that is British. It is of course Saint Georges day, where as a nation we celebrate our patron saints slaying of a mythical dragon, even though it is doubtful St George ever laid foot on our green and pleasant land. William Shakespeare was also born on this day in 1564. The ‘Bard of Avon’ is of course one of the greatest and most acclaimed English writers.
Still, all of that aside, if you want cause for real celebration, welcome in the new season asparagus! The British asparagus season is short, only around 8 weeks. Being as our Asparagus is considered by many to be the very best in the world, it is time to savour the wonderful flavour and buy your asparagus now.
Asparagus is best eaten freshly picked. As asparagus ages from field to shop, the natural sugars turn to starch, negatively affecting both the flavour and texture. So, buying from a local farm shop is your best bet to assure you of prime, fresh and delicious asparagus.
Asparagus can be cooked in a multitude of ways; blanched and griddled, steamed, boiled or roasted. These wonderful, tender spears are excellent just eaten on their own with melted butter, hollandaise sauce, aioli, or a tasty vinaigrette, or cut them up and add to stir fries, pasta dishes, tarts, quiches, risottos, and the list goes on.
Here are some local farm shops that will be stocking the best of local asparagus this weekend and the coming weeks. I have also included a few recipes to whet your appetite.
Essex Asparagus – Where to buy the best
Blackwells Farm Shop, Coggeshall – will be stocking Asaparagus from this weekend, sourced from local farms and growers in the area.
Calcott Hall Farm Shop, Brentwood – will be harvesting their own Asparagus crop which will be available in their farm shop this weekend.
Lathcoats Farm Shop, Galleywood – have started to harvest their own Asparagus, now available in their farm shop.
Sarah Green’s Organics Farm Shop, Tillingham – will harvest their own organic Asparagus available in their farm shop as of today.
Asparagus Recipe Ideas
Eat Well – Eat Local.