Sweet foods, such as succulent scallops or shrimp, go well with the earthy, green flavors of springs' most famous sprout. But so do salty ingredients, such as bacon, prosciutto or a pungent blue cheese.
Asparagus and nuts also marry well. This recipe pairs the vegetable with the sweetness of slivered almonds cooked in butter until both are golden brown.
ASPARAGUS WITH BROWNED BUTTER AND SLICED ALMONDS
Start to finish: 20 minutes
2 pounds thin, green asparagus
5 tablespoons butter
cup sliced almonds
Salt, to taste
In a large skillet over medium-high, bring 1 inch of lightly salted water to a boil. Add the asparagus and simmer, uncovered, until tender, about 4 minutes depending on the size of the spears. Drain and transfer to a serving plate. Cover with foil to keep warm. Return the skillet to medium-high heat and add the butter. When melted, add the almonds and cook, stirring often, until the butter is dark brown and the almonds are golden. Season with salt.
To serve, spoon the almonds and browned butter over the asparagus.