Quick to prepare with a no-fuss cheesy sauce, this grill is sure to become a favorite for a tasty hot lunch. Asparagus provides a host of health benefits, so make the most of it when it is in season.
|Serves 4 |
Preparation 5 minutes
Cooking 12 minutes
12 asparagus spears
4 large slices cooked ham. about 6 ounces
2/3 cup low-fat ricotta or low-fat cream cheese
1 teaspoon cornstarch
1/4 cup parmesan
3 tablespoons milk
2 tablespoons snipped fresh chives
Each serving provides
170 calories • 10 g fat • 6 g saturated fat • 3 g carbohydrates •17 g protein • 1 g fiber
Try baby leeks instead of asparagus. Allow 2-3 leeks per portion and poach them in a pan of boiling water for 3-5 minutes. or until tender.
Use crumbled blue cheese instead of parmesan.
1- Trim off any tough ends from the asparagus (see Cook’s Tip) and lay the spears in a large frying pan. Add just enough boiling water to cover, then return to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat, cover the pan, and simmer for about 5 minutes, or until the spears are just tender.
2- Meanwhile, lay the ham on a work surface. Preheat the broiler to medium-high and have a large ovenproof dish or tour gratin dishes ready for step 3. In a bowl, mix the ricotta or low-fat cream cheese and cornstarch. Finely grate the parmesan. Reserve 1 tablespoon of the parmesan and stir the rest into the mixture. Whisk in the milk.
3- Quick to prepare with a no-fuss cheesy sauce, this grill is sure to become a favorite for a tasty hot lunch. Asparagus provides a host of health benefits, so make the most of it when it is in season
4- Broil the asparagus and ham rolls for 5-6 minutes, or until the cheese topping is bubbling and browned. Sprinkle with the snipped chives before serving.
- If the spears have slightly tough ends, trim them off with a knife or snap them off—the stems will break at their weakest point—where the tender spear meets the woody end. Use the woody parts to flavor a stock, straining and discarding them before use.
This colorful vegetable is a good source of energy-releasing B vitamins, including folate, which lowers the risk of heart disease and stroke. With calcium and magnesium to maintain strong bones, asparagus is an all-round super food.