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Prosciutto-Wrapped Asparagus

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Prosciutto-wrapped asparagus is a delightful appetizer or side dish that combines the tender crispness of asparagus with the savory richness of prosciutto. This dish is not only elegant but also quick and easy to prepare, making it perfect for entertaining or as a delicious addition to any meal. Here’s how to make prosciutto-wrapped asparagus along with tips to ensure it turns out perfectly every time:

Ingredients:

  • 1 bunch of asparagus spears (about 1 pound)
  • 6-8 slices of prosciutto (thinly sliced)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Freshly ground black pepper

Instructions:

  1. Prepare the Asparagus:
    • Preheat your oven to 400°F (200°C).
    • Wash the asparagus spears thoroughly under cold water to remove any dirt or grit. Trim off the tough ends of the asparagus (usually about 1-2 inches from the bottom).
  2. Wrap the Asparagus with Prosciutto:
    • Take one slice of prosciutto and cut it lengthwise into two thinner strips.
    • Take one asparagus spear and starting from the bottom, wrap one strip of prosciutto around the spear in a spiral fashion, leaving the tip exposed. Repeat with the remaining asparagus spears.
  3. Arrange on Baking Sheet:
    • Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or foil for easy cleanup.
    • Place the prosciutto-wrapped asparagus spears on the baking sheet in a single layer.
  4. Drizzle with Olive Oil:
    • Drizzle olive oil over the prosciutto-wrapped asparagus spears, ensuring they are evenly coated.
    • Season with freshly ground black pepper to taste. Prosciutto is naturally salty, so you may not need additional salt.
  5. Bake in the Oven:
    • Place the baking sheet in the preheated oven and bake for 10-12 minutes, or until the asparagus is tender and the prosciutto is crisp.
  6. Serve:
    • Remove from the oven and let the prosciutto-wrapped asparagus spears cool slightly before serving.
    • Arrange on a serving platter and enjoy warm.

Tips for Success:

  • Choosing Asparagus: Look for firm, bright green asparagus spears with tightly closed tips. Thinner spears work best for this recipe as they cook more quickly and evenly.
  • Handling Prosciutto: Prosciutto is delicate, so handle it gently when wrapping around the asparagus spears to avoid tearing. If needed, secure the ends of the prosciutto with toothpicks before baking.
  • Variations: For a flavor twist, you can add a sprinkle of grated Parmesan cheese or a squeeze of fresh lemon juice over the prosciutto-wrapped asparagus before baking.
  • Presentation: Serve prosciutto-wrapped asparagus spears on a decorative platter garnished with fresh herbs like parsley or chives for a vibrant and appetizing presentation.

Nutritional Benefits:

Asparagus is low in calories and packed with essential nutrients such as vitamins A, C, E, and K, as well as folate and fiber. Prosciutto adds protein and flavor, making this dish not only delicious but also nutritious.

Pairing Suggestions:

Prosciutto-wrapped asparagus pairs well with a variety of dishes and beverages. Serve it as an appetizer alongside a glass of crisp white wine, or as a side dish with grilled chicken or fish. Its versatility makes it suitable for brunch, lunch, or dinner occasions.

Conclusion:

Prosciutto-wrapped asparagus is a simple yet sophisticated dish that highlights the natural flavors of the ingredients. Whether you’re hosting a dinner party or looking for a quick and tasty side dish, this recipe is sure to impress. Enjoy the combination of tender-crisp asparagus wrapped in savory prosciutto for a delightful culinary experience that is both elegant and satisfying.

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Written by Robert Zelesky

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