I saw these things in the local market and didn’t recognise them. This is wild asparagus, so much slimmer and more delicate that the usual white or green asparagus that I’m used to. Its Latin name is Ornithogalum pyrenaicum but that is largely irrelevant to me, other than linking it to the Pyrenees but in the UK it’s called Bath Asparagus, because it used to be found near Bath. Again, largely useless to me, as it’s not found near Bath so much anymore and I don’t live anywhere near Bath. But facts are grand, so no doubt I’ll remember this one.
See how egotistical my demands for knowledge are. I just want to eat these things. Now I needed a recipe for it.
Take your asparagus, trim the bottoms off to clean them up but it doesn’t go woody like “normal” asparagus. Finely chop a couple of shallots and some lardons, bacon or pancetta. Maybe some garlic too. Start by gently frying your shallots, garlic and lardons and stick some pasta onto to cook in some well-salted water. You can either quickly boil your asparagus before you add them to the pan with the lardons or simply fry them in the pan too – it all depends on how much crunch you want in your greens.
Beat an egg and a tablespoon of cream or crème fraiche and a handful of grated parmesan and a load of black pepper. When the pasta’s cooked, drain it and return it to its pan and mix in your lardon / asparagus mix and your egg / cream mix, gently combining it.
Add more parmesan because, if you’re honest, it’s hard to have too much parmesan on a pasta dish, except fish ones, of course, when any is too much.