Green Asparagus with Soft-Boiled Eggs

  • Active Time 15m
  • Total Time 15m
  • Rating ****

Serves 4

Here is a dish that would have pleased the French gourmets of the Renaissance, for at that time the tender asparagus was a culinary novelty. Since then, the appearance of fresh asparagus on our tables announces that spring is here. Seventeenth-century cooks recommended that asparagus be eaten slightly crunchy - al dente, as the Italians say. Later, it was preferred soft, with a longer cooking time. Whether you like it, as Marcel Proust did, with a mousseline sauce, or prefer hollandaise or vinaigrette, it is among the finest vegetables in French cooking.
When vegetables are presented en asperge it generally means they are in the form of young shoots or sprouts, and the term is usually applied to the first-picked vegetables gathered in the spring.


  • 2 pounds green asparagus
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 4 eggs


Cut off each asparagus spear 2 3/4 inches from the end of each tip. Keep the stalks for another use.

Cook the asparagus tips for 7 minutes in boiling salted water and then drain. Discard the water and return the asparagus to the saucepan; add the butter and roll the tips around in it. Add the Parmesan and mix again; cover the saucepan.

Bring some water to a boil in another saucepan and put in the eggs. Boil for 5 minutes, refresh under running water. Shell the eggs.

Divide the asparagus tips between 2 plates. Place the eggs in the center of the plate and serve immediately.

To eat, break the eggs with a fork; the yolks will run out and coat the asparagus. Add pepper to taste.

NOTE: For the eggs to cook perfectly, they must be at room temperature, not chilled, before cooking.

Recipe reprinted by permission of Weldon Russell. All rights reserved.

RecID 2667

nutrition information per serving

243 calories; 18g total fat; 246mg cholesterol; 127mg sodium; 11g carbohydrates; 5g fiber; 13g protein

These nutrition facts are calculated according to the ingredients listed in this recipe. Any substitutions will change these facts. Although we strive for accuracy, please note that food manufacturers occasionally change their food formulas, which could affect the calculations as shown.

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