Technikart - SuperCannes - - Welcome to Cannes -

Asparagus is so­me­thing to ce­le­brate in France. Its ar­ri­val is in­dis­pu­table evi­dence that Spring has ar­ri­ved, and it comes to the South of France rst, with all the ear­thy Me­di­ter­ra­nean ve­ge­tables. But let’s not bring up ar­ti­chokes Ba­ri­goule to­day. Asparagus is our Star. I have a pre­fe­rence for sweet green asparagus, but the ‘vio­let’ asparagus is de­li­cious as well, and slight­ly more tooth­some. Here I blanch the asparagus, then roast in pan­cet­ta with some soft-ba­ked quail eggs and Par­me­san cheese, to make a mix-it-your­self sort of sauce on your plate. for 4 per­sons • about 20 asparagus spears, cut to the same length, stems pee­led

• 8 slices Pan­cet­ta or ba­con • olive oil

• salt and pep­per

• 1 cup Par­me­san cheese


• 16 quail eggs

• 1 large gra­tin dish or

4 in­di­vi­dual ones Bring a pot of sal­ted wa­ter to the boil and blanch the asparagus un­til ba­re­ly ten­der, about 3-5 mi­nutes, de­pen­ding on size. Drain. Wrap bundles of 5 spears in the Pan­cet­ta or ba­con and lay them in an oi­led gra­tin dish, or dishes. Sea­son with salt and pep­per and drizzle with olive oil. Scat­ter the Par­me­san cheese sha­vings ca­re­less­ly and abun­dant­ly over the top of the bundles. Bake in a 200C/400F un­til the Pan­cet­ta is brow­ned and the Par­me­san melts, 8 - 10 mi­nutes. Re­move from the oven. Break the raw quail eggs (ea­sier to use a scis­sors) and place them on and around the bundles, al­lo­wing 4 per ser­ving. Re­turn to the oven and bake just un­til the whites of the eggs are set but the yolks are still run­ny, 2 mi­nutes. Break out a chil­led Ro­sé and some crus­ty bread and at­tack!

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