Seasonal Selections from Chef Martin

The Elusive White Asparagus

Every spring, white asparagus makes a brief appearance, and if you blink you might miss it. Now, you’re probably asking yourself, why is white asparagus so hard to find? It’s because there’s a demand for it and chefs consider it a rare spring delicacy.

The reason for white asparagus being white is the way it is grown. The asparagus is covered in a thick layer of sandy dirt as they grow so that no sunlight reaches it. The lack of exposure to sunlight robs their chance of turning green. The process, termed etiolation, creates pale white asparagus spears that have a more delicate flavor than their green cousins, takes longer to cook and costs 3-4 times more, making it a great dinner conversation.

At Mille Fleurs we will be serving this rare vegetable in a variety of ways including our Fresh White Asparagus in orange blossom honey vinaigrette, soft poached quail egg and San Daniele prosciutto, our White Asparagus Soup with Nasturtium cream, chervil and cinnamon croutons and a Trilogy of White Asparagus that is pan fried in bread crumbs, poached in vinaigrette and asparagus velouté.

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