Fresh asparagus spears are coated in a mixture of grated Parmesan and panko breadcrumbs and baked until crispy and golden brown for an addictive, healthy, “asparagus fries” side dish or snack.
The other day in the grocery store, my 5-year-old spied a display of asparagus and begged me to buy a bundle of it. Not one to argue with any child-o-mine who enthusiastically requests a green vegetable, I obliged. Now, I typically pan sautée or roast my asparagus. But once we got home, I decided to try a new method of cooking it, in hopes of convincing the 7-year-old and 2-year-old to sample it as well. And thus, this Parmesan Panko Asparagus was born!
This recipe is actually akin to Asparagus Fries, with each piece boasting a crunchy, golden coating and a tender interior. The asparagus spears are dredged in seasoned flour, eggs, and a mixture of grated Parmesan and crispy panko bread crumbs, arranged on a rack, and then roasted in the oven at a high temperature for around 10 minutes. The result is a flavorful, wonderfully textured side dish or snack that’s actually oven-baked and healthy, despite tasting fried.
My kids enjoyed dipping their asparagus spears in ketchup, à la regular French fries, because that’s the way we roll around here. However, I can think of lots of alternative dipping sauces — from garlicky aïoli to lemony Hollandaise to creamy horseradish — that would be yummy. Or just enjoy these babies sans sauce! They’re plenty flavorful perfectly plain and straight out of the oven.
I have to admit that I often get stuck in a rut when it comes to serving my family veggies. So it’s nice to come up with a new recipe every so often that’s a little bit different, easy to make, and downright delicious. Whether you’re a fan of asparagus or about to become one thanks to this recipe (ha), Parmesan Panko Asparagus would be a perfect side dish to add to your rotation all spring and summer long. I think these spears would be tasty alongside burgers, grilled grub, steak, baked chicken, pork chops…the sky’s the limit! Hope y’all love this new twist on asparagus. 🙂
Adapted from Damn Delicious
More spring & summer sides…