This is a really tasty lunch which can be ready in 10 minutes. It is very nutritious & satisfying. I know butter is not exactly a health food but I reckon it is ok to eat in moderation – at least it’s not margarine! I suppose to make this even healthier you could mix the miso with olive oil but I love butter & asparagus.
I really love flavours of Japan. Cooking with Japanese ingredients is a fairly new thing for me but I am learning a lot from a fabulous book called Hashi. Once you have a few of the essential ingredients there are tons of dishes you can make. I have become hooked on Yuzu which is a Japanese citrus fruit. It costs a small fortune for a small bottle where I live but I can’t help myself. The flavour is like the perfume of grapefruit, orange & lemon all at the same time.
Miso has become one of my staple ingredients. It is a paste made by fermenting soy beans or other grains and legumes. The miso I used in this recipe is made with brown rice & has a deep savoury flavour. It is almost like a beef stock. Miso is widely available in supermarkets in the UK now, any variety will do to make this recipe but you may need to alter the amount added to the butter. White miso seems to be the most widely available and has a less intense taste so I would add more. You are looking for a balance of flavours where the miso is strong but the flavour of the butter is still there.Asparagus season is finally dawning. I really love it & eat it everyday at this time of year. I think asparagus is lovely in itself so I don’t like to do a lot to it. Normally I just blanch it, add a knob of butter, salt, pepper & a squeeze of lemon & eat it from the pan. It rarely makes it to a dinner plate. However, sometimes I like to have a poached egg with it as the yolk makes a lovely unctuous sauce. Now I have discovered miso butter I think this is my new favourite asparagus dish. The miso & egg yolk combine in a luxurious, salty sauce which I mop up with toast at the end.
There is more miso butter here than needed for the dish. Store it in a container in the fridge and it can be used for all kinds of things. I just had some on toast with an egg for breakfast. The other night we had it on Jersey Royal potatoes and I cannot wait to try it on a steak. It is a useful thing to have in the fridge to add some ooomph to ordinary ingredients.
Asparagus with Miso Butter
Ingredients (Serves 1)
Bunch of Asparagus
50g Unsalted Butter
1.5 tbsp Brown Rice Miso (alter the amount for other types of miso)
1. Making the miso butter is ridiculously easy. It helps if the butter is soft. You should beat them for a few minutes until they are well blended and the mixture is light in texture. If you are unsure how much miso to add, start with a tablespoon and add it bit by bit. If it becomes too overpowering just add more butter. This cannot go wrong really as you can just play with the 2 ingredients until it is right for you.
2. Start to heat the water for your poached egg. Blanch the asparagus in salted water until it is cooked to your taste.
3. Once the asparagus is ready place the egg into the water and then drain the it. Drop your eggs into the poaching water. While the asparagus is still in the hot pan add a large dollop of miso butter and swirl it around to cover the vegetables. Season with a tiny pinch of salt. It does need much as the miso is salty but I prefer it (may not be for everyone I do like highly seasoned food)
4. Once the eggs are ready drain & serve them over the asparagus.