At the market fresh asparagus wrapped in a moist towel were resting a wooden crate. I asked the vendor why he had wrapped the asparagus in a moist towel? "Freshly cut so tender you need not cook them," he added, "Did you know that asparagus is in the oldest surviving book of recipes, the Apicius from the third century?" De re coquinaria, Book III.
"Of course I knew that. Who doesn't?" I laughed.
I love hearing sales-people talk their jive.
I bought a kilo of the points d'amour ("love tips").
The market is two minutes from my front door. The "freshly cut" asparagus went from the moist towel, into my shopping cart, then home, rinsed and sauteed.
Pasta with Asparagus al dente.
Cook Pasta, a few minutes less than what is written on the box.
While the water is doing its best to boil prepare the sauce.
Saute a hearty handful of pine nuts, and put aside,
Saute strips of smoked salmon,
When the pasta water begins to boil add salt to the water.
Pour cream into a pan and heat,
Cut the steamed asparagus in bite-able sizes.
Before the cream starts to roll and tumble wildly, add the asparagus, pine nuts, smoked salmon and a tad of tarragon to it, let it simmer and thicken.
Drain the pasta, add a touch of olive oil and Parmesan toss, then add the asparagus cream sauce.