Tuesday, May 19, 2009

CSA week 1: Speck Wrapped Asparagus with Lemon Tarragon Aioli

I recently catered an event at the Review Studios where I served this appetizer to take advantage of one of spring's abundant delights. The salty smokiness of the speck compliments the Asparagus well. Speck is similar to prosciutto in that they are both the hind leg of the pig, but unlike prosciutto the ham is boned prior to curing in salt, juniper berries, and other spice combinations. Once the ham has cured for several weeks it is cold-smoked for about a week and then left to mature for about five months. You can substitute some local bacon for the speck for an equally lovely appetizer!

Speck Wrapped Asparagus with Lemon Tarragon Aioli
Ingredients to gather: For 4 appetizers or side dishes

8 stalks Asparagus
8 2" strips of speck or local bacon
2 tablespoons mayo
1 lemon wedge
10 leaves of Tarragon
grapeseed or olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
Step 1:
Preheat oven to 425. Cut the bottom off of the Asparagus stalks .

Step 2:
Roll speck or bacon around bottom of cut Asparagus

Step 3:
Place on baking tray and drizzle with oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Step 4:
Bake in preheated oven for 8 minutes. While Asparagus are baking make the ailoi by mixing the mayo, lemon, and Tarragon until smooth add salt and pepper to taste.

Step 5:
Plate, serve, eat, repeat...

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