Anyone coming for dinner? Impress them with this elegant appetizer. It is easy to put together and most of it can be done in advance. This is a perfect dish to use the mushrooms truffle pâté I talked about recently.
3 white asparagus spears per person (or more if they are baby asparagus)
12 slices of prosciutto, very thinly sliced
beurre maître d’hôtel (recipe below)
1 tablespoon mushrooms truffle pâté
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
2 teaspoons sherry vinegar
1 poached egg per person
flat leaf parsley or microgreens for garnish, something green
fleur de sel and freshly cracked black pepper
1. Blanch the asparagus in salted boiling water for 2 or 3 minutes then plunge them in an ice bath until completely cooled. Set on clean kitchen towels to dry. Set aside.
2. Poach the eggs: bring a pot of water to a simmer (not a boil), add about 1 tablespoon of white vinegar and poach the eggs for exactly 3 minutes. Remove them from the water with a slotted spoon and transfer to a bowl of ice water to stop the cooking. Leave them in the ice water for 2 minutes and place on paper towels to let them drain.
3. Prepare the rolls: take one slice of prosciutto, spread a thin layer of butter on it and wrap it around the asparagus. Repeat for each asparagus spear. Set aside.
4. Prepare the vinaigrette: in a small bowl, combine the mushrooms truffle pâté, the olive oil and the sherry vinegar. Taste and adjust the quantity of oil to get a nice level of acidity. This appetizer can be prepared in advance up to this point.
5. You are now ready to plate: on a very hot grill, cook the prosciutto-wrapped asparagus bundles until they are warm and they have nice grill marks, one or two minutes per side. Reheat the poached eggs by plunging them in simmering water for 30 seconds and dry them on paper towels. Put three asparagus bundles on a plate, top with the egg, season the egg with salt and pepper, add the parsley or greens and finish with a generous drizzle of vinaigrette all around. Your guests will most certainly be impressed.
Beurre maître d’hôtel:
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/4 shallot, very finely minced
2 teaspoons finely chopped italian parsley
1 teaspoon chives, finely chopped
1/4 clove garlic, grated
1 or 2 leaves fresh sage, finely chopped
salt and pepper to taste
Combine all ingredients and mix well.
Adapted from Bistro Laurent Tourondel