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Asparagus Ideas

Every spring we feel an obligation to talk about one of the first vegetables to his the market here in Maryland, and that would be asparagus.  And every time we do this show, I worry if we're going to run out of ideas.  And as Chef Jerry Pellegrino of Schola Cooking School has pointed out, it's looks like that's  not going to happen any time soon.

Here are a few of the ideas we came up with:

Roasted asparagus with shallots and cauliflower (add a little cayenne for a kick, and sprinkle with toasted almond slices)

Roasted asparagus with prosciutto and herb cheese (mix some fresh herbs in the some ricotta cheese, and smear on the piece of ham, wrap up two or three spears of asparagus)

Spring Garden Fritatta, with asparagus, shallots, chives, mushrooms, and shredded chicken breast... cheat with some cherry tomatoes

Asparagus topped with crumbled gorganzola and teriyaki glazed walnuts

Creamed Asparagus on Toast (sauté cut up asparagus, make a simple bechemel sauce with grated parmesan cheese, toss in some crumbled bacon, pour over toast and garnish with sliced hard-boiled eggs)

Deep Fried Asparagus (dip into a milk and egg mixture, then roll in a seasoned biscuit biscuit mix, then deep fry)

Salmon and Asaparagus Chinese Spring Rolls (crumble sautéed salmon, and mix with cut up asparagus, spring onions, garlic, shredded carrot and herbs; fill a Chinese spring roll, and fry in oil in a wok)

Al Spoler, well known to WYPR listeners as the wine-loving co-host of "Cellar Notes" has had a long-standing parallel interest in cooking as well. Al has said, the moment he started getting serious about Sunday night dinners was the same moment he started getting serious about wine. Over the years, he has benefited greatly from being a member of the Cork and Fork Society of Baltimore, a gentlemen's dining club that serves black tie meals cooked by the members themselves who are some of Baltimore's most accomplished amateur cooks.
Executive Chef Jerry Pellegrino of Corks restaurant is fascinated by food and wine, and the way they work in harmony on the palate. His understanding of the two goes all the way to the molecular level, drawing on his advanced education in molecular biology. His cuisine is simple and surprising, pairing unexpected ingredients together to work with Corks' extensive wine offerings.