Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Cheap & easy dinner, plentiful & bountiful asparagus

Potato Rosti with grilled asparagus
*this makes delicious dinner for 2. For one person, just make a smaller rosti, cutting amounts in half.

3 large potatoes
1 onion, peeled
salt and pepper
3 or 4 tbsp olive oil
1 lb asparagus
2 tbsp olive oil
salt and pepper
2 eggs

Preheat oven to 350. Grate potatoes (leave skin on) and onion. Season with salt and pepper. Heat olive oil in a skillet (one that can go in the oven - no plastic handles!). Make sure pan is coated well with oil to avoid rosti mishaps. Pile grated potato and onion mixture in skillet, pressing down and forming a huge, pan-sized potato pancake. Cook on medium heat for 7 or 8 minutes. Run spatula under edges to loosen, then place a large plate face down on the rosti. Flip the entire thing onto the plate, then slide the rosti back onto the pan (now cooking the uncooked side). Put the skillet in the oven for another 7 or 8 minutes.

Meanwhile, perhaps while the first side of the rosti cooks, break off the tough ends of the asparagus. Toss on a baking pan with olive oil. Season with salt and pepper. When you put the rosti in the oven, throw in the asparagus. They'll be done the same time as the rosti! (8 minutes). Roll them around once for even cooking.

Meanwhile, while asparagus and rosti are in the oven, fry two eggs.
Serve each rosti piled with asparagus, topped with an egg (maybe with a side of homemade applesause for the rosti).

Cheap, cheap dinner. The whole thing costs between 2 and 4 dollars, depending on whether you're using organic ingredients. Use butter instead of olive oil and you have yourself a 100 mile dinner, possible much much closer, especially if you're lucky enough to have an asparagus bed in your backyard. No excuses for that woody, tasteless asparagus from Peru right now - everywhere has Ontario asparagus, from No Frills to Dufferin Grove to St. Lawrence Market.

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