Jammy-egged asparagus with butter and soy is an annual spring enjoyment

Unable to grow our own asparagus (we’ve tried), we rely on local farmers to provide us with this springtime treat. And when we have some, we often rely on this recipe we adapted from Andrea Reusing’s Cooking in the Moment. The 2011 volume is one of those that fits right in to Gourmandistan’s way of thinking, centering on local farms and seasonally appropriate recipes.

One of our favorites from Reusing’s book is this simple dish of asparagus, egg, soy and butter. Gently blanched spears are briefly blistered in oil before bathing in a blend of soy and butter. We added green garlic and scallions (more early spring market finds), and moved from poached eggs to these wonderfully jammy ones, for an easy yet decadent dinner. (Yeah, it’s a lot of butter. But local asparagus is here for only a very short time each year.)

Should you have access to fresh local asparagus and fresh eggs, we urge to you enjoy. And happy spring!


(adapted from Andrea Reusing’s Cooking in the Moment)

  • 1 bunch asparagus (1/2 to 3/4 lb.), tough ends cut off
  • 2 tsp. neutral oil
  • 4 scallions and/or green garlic, white parts sliced crosswise (optional)
  • 2 TB soy sauce
  • 5 TB unsalted butter, at room temperature

Heat some salted water in a large sauté pan. Drop in the asparagus and cook for about 30 seconds. Remove asparagus with a spatula or slotted spoon and place on a clean towel.

Discard water and wipe pan dry. Warm pan over high heat, then add oil. When hot, add asparagus. Toss until asparagus is starting to blister in spots, then add scallions and/or garlic. Toss with a spatula, being careful not to burn scallions/garlic.

Reduce heat. Add soy sauce, then a splash of water, then the butter. Toss until butter is melted and the sauce is dark and emulsified.

Serve with eggs of some sort: soft-boiled, poached or fried. And some good bread to mop up the sauce.


  1. Don’t say “a lot of butter” in a pejorative way!

    Asparagus are a bitch. I grew a plant for three years, and got six or seven skinny asparagus shoots for my efforts.

  2. New asparagus recipes are always welcome and this looks delicious (although I never tire of simply bathing the spears in melted butter). Love the touch of soy though. Yum. Thank you!

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