I really can't resist Griddled Asparagus with Serrano Ham. In France there seems to be quite a long season of the white asparagus, which just looks too anaemic to me, so when the green stuff finally arrives I buy loads of it! I used to boil it briefly or steam it but, with the dense stem at one end and the delicate flower head at the other, it was never an easy task. Griddled asparagus means that the heavier stem end sits on the hot pan and the flower end tends to stick up and steam gently. The result is delicious, crisp asparagus; much different from a bent, soggy frond which leeches green water all over the plate!The simplest way to prepare them is to bend the asparagus at the stem end and they should naturally snap when it gets to the woody bit. My dogs love the off cuts so nothing is wasted. Sometimes you might need to take off a bit with a vegetable peeler. However, the asparagus here is very tender so I just trimmed them all to the length of my griddle pan. Of course, this dish is great on the barbecue too.
Each slice of ham was about 2 inches wide so I sliced 6 in half lengthways to wrap 12 asparagus spears.
I started just below the flower head and wrapped on the diagonal. It's a bit fiddly as the ham is very thin, but it doesn't really matter if the ham tears.
Heat the griddle with about a teaspoon of oil and one of butter then place the asparagus in the pan for about 2 minutes.
Flip them over for another couple of minutes, season then serve. They should be tender but still firm and the ham will be lovely and sweet and crisp. Delicious!
You can serve these as an accompaniment to just about anything or serve as a starter.
Griddled Asparagus with Serrano
- 12 asparagus spears
- 6 slices Serrano ham
- 1 tsp oil
- 1 tsp butter
- Wash and trim the asparagus to even lengths (make sure they fit in the pan).
- Split each ham slice in two lengthways and wind around the asparagus diagonally.
- Heat the fat in a griddle pan and add the asparagus for 2 minutes each side.
- Season and serve.