Learn how to cut asparagus correctly and other ways you can cut it to use in your dishes. This tutorial will show you the best way to cut asparagus in 4 ways for your needs.
How to select asparagus
When you are buying asparagus, look for firm spears with tight tips.
Asparagus is a spring vegetable but depending on your location, it can be available all year round although not in abundance.
A sharp knife
How to cut asparagus
First method: this method is best if you are only cutting a few and no equipment is required too.
There are two parts to asparagus, the woody part, and the edible part. The woody part is the bottom of the spear and you don’t want to eat that so you need to cut it off.
To do this, hold the asparagus in one hand, and with your other hand, bend it until it snaps. You are looking about 1 - ½ inches off the bottom of the vegetable just where the woody part ends. Don't worry it will snap off easily.
While this method seems easy, it can also lead to food waste, except you are a professional, you are likely not able to snap at the same spot for all the asparagus.
Second method: This method is the best, it is easy and quick and you can cut as many as you want under 5 minutes. Line up the asparagus on a chopping board making sure they are all facing the same direction and the top of the spears are equal.
Using a sharp knife, cut off the woody end, usually about 1-1½ inches off. Cook the vegetable as desired.
How to cut asparagus for stir fry
Method 3 and 4: If you would be stir-frying asparagus or using it in other recipes Such as soups, omelets, or frittatas, then you will have to slice it into other smaller sizes.
Cut it into halves or thirds or into chunks, for a better presentation, cut it at an angle. See photos for reference.
How to store asparagus
The best way to store asparagus at home from drying out is to keep it in the fridge in a jar filled with water at the bottom.
Cut the woody end of your asparagus, place it in the mason jar, add water to the jar, about 1 inch then cover the jar loosely with a clear plastic bag. It will remain fresh in the fridge for 4-7 days. This will help prevent them from going limp or moldy before they are used.
To prolong the life of asparagus you can freeze it. Blanch for about 1-3 minutes followed by a quick ice bath. Flash freeze for up to 2 hours or until frozen, transfer to a freezer-safe bag and freeze for up to 1 year.
How to cook asparagus
There are different ways to cook this fibrous vegetable, it can be steamed, boiled, roasted, air fried, or oven-baked. Whichever way you choose to cook asparagus, make sure that you do not overcook it. depending on the cooking method you choose, it will typically cook anywhere from 3 to 7 minutes.
Remember to cut off the woody ends of your asparagus spears before cooking them. Do not discard these ends but instead use them to make vegetable stock!
Do I have to peel to asparagus
No this is not necessary, most of the nutrients are in the skin. However, if the stalk is thick then you might want to peel off the skin using a vegetable peeler
How do I know the woody part of the asparagus
The woody part is the lightest part of asparagus, usually at the bottom.
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How To Cut Asparagus
- Sharp knife and chopping board
- 1 pound asparagus
- Hold the asparagus in one hand, and with your other hand, bend it until it snaps. You are looking about 1 - ½ inches off the bottom of the vegetable just where the woody part ends. It should snap off naturally with little to no effort.
- Line up the asparagus on a chopping board making sure they are all facing the same direction and the top of the spears are equal.
- Using a sharp knife, cut off the woody end, usually about 1-1½ inches off. Cook the vegetables as desired.
How to cut asparagus for stir fry
- Cut it into halves or thirds or into chunks, for a better presentation, cut it at an angle. See photos for reference.