white asparagus wrapped in japanese eggplant
with a chiffonade of shiso
served over mizuna
spicy lemon miso dressing
blistered shishito peppers and grape tomatoes
Natasha, the 5 Star Foodie & Lazaro of Lazaro Cooks! host the 5 Star Makeover Cooking Group, a fabulous monthly event for “sharing ideas and creating gourmet makeovers of selected classic dishes or flavor combinations.”
The 5 Star Makeover theme for April is a special seasonal ingredient, White Asparagus.
“For a brief two weeks at the end of April, the prized white asparagus is in season. In Germany, this mini-season is celebrated with a mania not to be missed, and every restaurant in on the tradition offers a special menu, called a Spargel Karte. These menus include anywhere from three to thirteen courses, all featuring the tender, sweet, white asparagus. Typical classic dishes include a white asparagus with Hollandaise sauce or a white asparagus soup. We invite you to think outside the box to create a unique gourmet dish featuring white asparagus.”
trim the tough stems, peel entire stalk with a vegetable peeler
boil in salted water, 8 to 10 minutes until tender, plunge in an ice bath, dry on paper towels
thinly slice japanese eggplant lengthwise on a mandoline
overlap eggplant slices, top with about 5 asparagus spears
season with salt and pepper
roll the eggplant around the spears, secure with a toothpick, trim off extra eggplant
heat a non-stick pan over medium high heat
add a drizzle of olive oil, then add asparagus bundles
turn asparagus bundles to brown all sides, add more olive oil as needed
remove to paper towel when all sides are browned, remove toothpicks
prepare a chiffonade of perilla (japanese shiso)
a member of the mint family, this herb adds a refreshing bright note to the dish
grill shishito peppers
grill grape tomatoes until lightly charred
place asparagus bundles over mizuna
a member of the mustard family, mizuna adds a peppery flavor and a beautiful feathery component
spicy lemon miso dressing
- 3 T. lemon juice
- 2 t. white miso paste
- 1 1/2 T. low-sodium soy sauce
- 1 small clove garlic
- 1 t. aji amarillo paste (or other chile paste)
- 4 T. grape seed oil
blend all ingredients in the small bowl of a food processor
drizzle lemon miso dressing around asparagus bundles
top with a chiffonade of perilla
serve with blistered shishito peppers and grape tomatoes
thank you to natasha and lazaro for including
Taste With The Eyes
5 star makeover cooking group
visit 5 Star Foodie and Lazaro Cooks! to experience all the fabulous white asparagus creations
36 thoughts on “white asparagus wrapped in japanese eggplant”
I love the Asian flare of your white asparagus dish with the shiso leaves and the with a spicy lemon miso dressing, amazing flavors!
Hi Natasha – it is my honor to be a part of your cooking group, looking forward to gourmet picnic fare in May!
What a lovely dish. So modern and artfully presented. You are a culinary artist. Love the Asian flavor profile. 5 Star dish all the way.
Thank you for participating in our group and elevating it with your talent.
Dear Lazaro – thank you for including me in your cooking group, I really love the challenge!
Gorgeous dish. I am crazy about shiso and never thought of it with asparagus… what a great idea. The presentation is spectacular…. the shapes and colors super. Although I am not sure I will find more white asparagus… I can so see this with green… fabulous for my vegetarian friends.!
Hi Deana – sure, green is good too!
Absolutely delectable! I love the use of mizuna as the bed, so pretty 🙂
Love this…light yet so packed with flavor. A perfect starter! Great job, LL!
Your presentation is always gorgeous! I’d like to have this for Mother’s Day. I’ll be sure to leave some hints around the house, like your blog url placed in prominent places!
Good luck Sandra- let me know if it works 🙂
Wowsa. You just put the 5-star in this makeover in a big way. Such a creative mixture of flavors, I would really love to try this.
Thanks Trix – please let me know if you do…
I’m ready to whoosh you away to my kitchen. You do make vegetables into the most delectable of dishes and oh so pretty. Natasha’s round-up is an eye-opener. I love coming here because you have me daydreaming about vegetables for the rest of the day.
Thanks Claudia – white asparagus was a great make-over choice. Natasha really had me thinking…
girl you knock it out the box every single time. this is so stunning in every way. the tomatoes, the eggplant, the sauce… gasp. bookmarked for myself and my parents for sure. they’ll love it. u rock!
Oh thanks B! It is really fun participating in the cooking group, no?
Please let me know if you make this…
I thought eggplant had no more secrets for me but here you have shown me a new way to savor it with these delicate white asparagus and the wonderful Asian sauce and herbs. I can savor it just looking at the photos!
Hi Joumana – the inspiration came from Daniel Boulud’s eggplant wrapped swordfish!
How beautiful!!! I would love this!! 🙂
These little bundles are truly beautiful and I love the flavors you’ve paired here. That spicy lemon miso dressing sounds fantastic!
Thank you Faith – now I’m dreaming of picnic foods…
You put a lot into this post and it shows in every way.
Thanks Angela – it was a fun challenge, no?
This is an absolutely beautiful post! The pictures and food are gorgeous. I love all the ingredients and preparations that went into this dish. Thank you so much for sharing about it 🙂
Thank you Hester, I really appreciate your kind words.
Your food is just so darn beautiful!
Marie – you are always too kind.
I’m seriously in love with your presentation -gorgeous!! such a clever idea to present it and the dressing is right up my alley. I never have shiso with anything else other than sushi. It sounds so intriguing to me to try shiso with vegetable!
Thanks Tanantha – I recently used shiso with lemon zest on a pasta salad, it rocked too!
Defintely hard to find white asparagus but I will oggle your photos and keep my eyes open for them at my farmers market!
Thanks for your comment. I love yours too, the presentation and flavors sound amazing.
5 Star in every sense of the phrase! I adore eggplant, and wrapped around the elusive white asparagus along with shishito peppers and the subtle Asian flavors – truly delectable! I’ll be trying this with the more common variety of asparagus 🙂
Wow, that truly is a treat for all the senses. So glad to finally get to read all of the makeover posts – nearly time to start thinking about the next one!
Wow. Beautiful dish. Just beautiful. 🙂 I am so sad to have missed the white asparagus. I believe I was in France the last time I had it.
Is the Makeover event open to anyone who wants to join?
Hi Kim – Thank you!
And should can contact Natasha, the 5 Star Foodie.