Asparagus Under a Blanket

Let’s celebrate the arrival of Spring with this delicious asparagus treat. For vegetarians you can roll the asparagus in cheese slices instead of the ham.

YOU WILL NEED

  • ± 12 fresh green asparagus
  • 1 T (15 ml) olive oil
  • Ina Paarman's Vegetable Spice
  • 4 slices of cooked ham or sliced cheddar cheese
  • 1 cup (250 ml) full cream milk
  • 2 T (30 ml) butter
  • 2 T (30 ml) Ina Paarman's White Sauce Powder
  • 2 T (30 ml) water
  • ½ cup (125 ml) fresh cream
  • 4 T (60 ml) parmesan or pecorino cheese, grated
Method

Either snap or cut off the woody ends of the asparagus. Put them into a frying pan with ½ cup of water and the olive oil and boil fast while shaking the pan to roll them gently. Three minutes cooking time should be enough. The asparagus will become bright green. Season lightly with Vegetable Spice and leave to cool.

Make the white sauce. Work according to the instructions on the pack. Just make sure you use at least a 1 litre size jug to prevent the sauce from boiling over in the microwave. Stir in the cream. Leave to stand.

Adjust oven rack to middle position.

Pre-heat oven to 200°C. Butter a medium size ovenproof dish or use 4 individual dishes.

Divide asparagus into 4 portions and roll each bunch tightly in a slice of ham or cheese.
Spread about 2 T (30 ml) of the white sauce over the base of the dish. Lay the asparagus bundles on top and coat with the remaining sauce. Sprinkle cheese over.

Bake for 15 – 20 minutes until browned in spots.

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