About this recipe:Can be served as either a side or a warm starter. Indulge with the finest balsamic vinegar you can find, and enjoy!
500g (1 lb) thin asparagus spears
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
30g (1 oz) shaved Parmesan
freshly ground black pepper to taste
60ml (2 fl oz) balsamic vinegar, or to taste
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Method Prep:5min › Cook:15min › Ready in:20min
Preheat oven to 230 C / Gas mark 8.
Place asparagus on a baking tray. Drizzle with olive oil, and toss to coat. Arrange asparagus spears in a single layer. Spread Parmesan over asparagus, and season with freshly ground black pepper.
Bake 12 to 15 minutes in preheated oven, until cheese is melted and crispy, and asparagus is tender but firm. Serve immediately on warm plates, sprinkling with balsamic vinegar to taste.
Parmesan cheese is not truly vegetarian, as it contains animal rennet. To make this dish 100% vegetarian, omit the cheese or find a suitable vegetarian substitute made without animal rennet. In supermarkets look for the 'parmesan style hard cheeses' which are suitable for vegetarians.
It was tasty but mainly of cheeze and balsamic. The asparagus flavour was somewhat overpowered. (I had substituted mature cheddar for the parmesan.) In the cooking time some of the cheddar became crispy and some did not. The asparagus, though, was definitely cooked enough so it could not cook for longer. My recommendation would be to ease off on the balsamic. - 12 Mar 2015