Thursday, May 28, 2009

The fascinating world of asparagus

Asparagus is a very popular vegetable where we live and is grown in our area at this time of year. White (blanched) asparagus is produced in the absence of sunlight, and that is what is most common where we live. We can also buy green asparagus, but white is the favored.
If you are out driving, like Luke and I were this afternoon, you are bound to see fields with long rows, covered with heavy white plastic that is black on the inside. This blocks the sun as well as heats up on the inside! On a warm day the asparagus can grow 2-3 inches per day!
Growing white asparagus is an intensive process and it takes at least 3 years until the first harvest. I learned this just today - the next time I eat asparagus (hopefully soon!) I will appreciate it even more! My favorite asparagus dish is cream of asparagus soup!
Most restaurants have asparagus or "spargel" as it is called in German, on the menu right now.

This afternoon I went to an asparagus field and lifted the white plastic to check out what was underneath. I quickly took a picture. I did not want to linger for fear of getting yelled at!!

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