Now THAT’S asparagus…

thick asparagus spearsI was chuckling over these as I prepared them. Thick? You bet.

Asparagus spears this thick are inedible unless you shave the bottom few inches (a potato peeler does the trick nicely). But when prepared properly, they are utterly delicious and gorgeously edible from the tip of the spear to the thick bottom stem.

Best of all, you really can’t buy ’em like this in shops. There are millionaires all over the world who – unless they have their own private asparagus beds – can never know what real asparagus is like.

This is because commercial growers grow intensively: beds are planted as close as possible, with the absolute minimum fertiliser/manure input, and spears are harvested ruthlessly from early April until June 21st (or even later).

Consequence: The plants can never produce spears more than a centimetre or so in diameter. If you’re just growing for quality and taste, though, you can lovingly service your asparagus beds. Lots of manure, lots of TLC and a shorter cutting season (I usually stop on June 1st) yields fat, delicious, excellent asparagus.

So kiss my arse, millionaires. I’m eating better than you tonight.

10 Responses to “Now THAT’S asparagus…”

  1. Damo Says:

    That makes all the effort worthwhile, something you can’t buy in the shops.

  2. Rampant_Weasel Says:

    what about millionaires with their own personal gardeners?

    lol 🙂

  3. Jane Says:

    Crikey, they are whoppers, bet they are delicous!

  4. The Sage Butterfly Says:

    Your asparagus looks yummy. I lost my some of my asparagus plants and had to start over. The new ones are too small to eat.

  5. Jody Says:

    I freaking love it. We have several beds ourselves. I’ve always looked for the smaller spears, but this year, I’ll lay down the composted horse shit and let it grow!

  6. Tanya Walton Says:

    Wow…what more can I say…I REALLY need to get some asparagus and get it planted…any tips on what to look for when buying so I know I’m getting good plants SM???

  7. mediaOrganic Says:

    Most impressive. I’ve read that the deeper the crowns are planted, the thicker (and fewer) the spears will be. Does this mesh with your experience? This will be the 4th season for our asparagus bed and most of the protruding spears are on the thicker side, though not nearly as thick as these. Last season was as disappointing harvest for us so I fertilized the bed last fall and top dressed it with compost. I’m hoping that will make a difference.

  8. Soilman Says:

    Hi John

    Yes, the deeper the crowns the thicker the spears. But here’s the thing: to keep your crowns deep, you have to keep putting manure/compost/humus on the beds every year. Asparagus crowns tend to come shallower as they age, so the only way to keep ’em down deep is to keep topping up.

  9. Darren Says:

    I picked up a bundle of asparagus spears almost as thick as those this morning from the deli / greengrocer around the corner. Cost me £2.99 for 11 spears though. Wish I had room to grow a few crowns instead. Thanks for the preparation tip as well, I’ll use that when I cook them tonight.

  10. Christina Says:

    Um, I don’t even have words. Wonderful. Naughty. I guess I do have two words.