Eating locally and seasonally have taught me two very valuable lessons. One, very few things grow naturally year round, despite what you can find in the supermarket. And two, the long anticipated wait for seasonable produce makes it that much more of a treat. Today, asparagus was finally found at the Mill City Farmer's Market, my favorite Minneapolis market. I snatched up 2 pounds of gorgeous purple and green stalks. The booth I usually purchase from told me that the asparagus she sells comes from an asparagus patch planted on her family farm over 50 years ago. OMG. I think about my own four little plants and wonder if I will ever see them hit the 50 year mark.
Here in Minnesota, the cold start to spring has been ideal weather for asparagus season. Warm days, cool nights and lots of rain have yielded some of the longest stalks I have ever seen. For the next month, I will be happily munching on asparagus for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Sauteed, baked, roasted, slivered, peeled and raw, I can't get enough. Luckily, by the time the weather breaks and summer truly rolls in, I can start obsessing over tomatoes instead.