The maple glaze adds sweetness, of course. But it is the sea salt that is the key to this asparagus recipe. It enhances the maple flavor, provides amazing crunch, and allows the syrup to form an almost candy-like coating.
Good-quality sea salts are showing up in supermarkets more and more. Maldon is my favorite brand. Its pyramid-like crystals melt in your mouth and make everything -- not just asparagus -- taste better.
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 12 minutes
Total Time: 17 minutes
- 1 pound fresh asparagus spears
- 2 Tbsp. olive oil
- 2 tsp. maple syrup
- 1-1/2 tsp. sea salt or 1 tsp. kosher salt
- 1 tsp. butter
- Wash asparagus spears and trim woody ends off. Discard. Dry asparagus well with paper towels. Cut asparagus into 3-inch pieces.
- Using a skillet large enough to hold all of the asparagus in a single layer, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat.
- Stir to coat the asparagus pieces completely with the oil.
- Cook, stirring occasionally, until there is no water in the pan, and the asparagus is browned and tender when pierced with a fork, about 6 minutes. Turn heat down to medium if asparagus is browning too fast.
- Drizzle maple syrup evenly over asparagus. Stir to coat all the asparagus spears.
- Add sea salt and butter. Turn off heat. Stir until butter is melted and the sea salt starts to form a crust.