Cast Iron Asparagus with Pecans and Brown Sugar
Recipe courtesy: Colorado Department of Agriculture and Chef Jason K. Morse, C.E.C.
12 oz. applewood thick-cut bacon, cut into random-sized pieces
2 shallots, peeled, cut in half and cut into strips (julienne)
2 cloves fresh garlic, minced fine
2 bunches asparagus, cut off woody ends and leave as spears
3/4 cup dark brown sugar
3/4 cup pecan pieces, toasted
Kosher salt to taste
Black ground pepper to taste
Red crushed pepper to taste
Heat a large cast iron skillet on high heat for 5 minutes; add the bacon and sauté for 5 minutes or until bacon starts to brown. Drain most of the fat off the bacon and place the pan back on the heat.
Add the garlic and shallots and cook until the shallots start to caramelize. Add the Asparagus and sauté until half cooked. Add the brown sugar and allow to melt, then add the toasted pecans and stir.
Turn heat down to medium. Allow the asparagus to become glazed with the sugar, about 4-5 minutes. Turn off the heat when glazed and season to taste.
Remove the asparagus and place into serving dish then top with bacon, shallot, sugar and pecan mix.
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