I seriously LOVE asparagus! I know I say that with a lot of foods, but asparagus is one of those veggies I would eat pretty much every day if I could. One of my favorite ways to eat them is roasted with a little olive oil, salt, and pepper. For those of you who say you don't like asparagus, it is probably because of 1 of 2 reasons: 1) It was overcooked and mushy or 2) it wasn't prepped properly and had chewy, woody ends.
Well it is time to forget the asparagus of the past and to learn to make it properly! To start out, cover a baking sheet with a little aluminum foil (makes clean-up super easy) and preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Pick up a few pieces of asparagus and grip the stalks at either end.
Bend the asparagus gently in the middle. The asparagus will naturally break where the woody part ends and the delicious stalk begins. Yes, this may mean you have some really short stalks (especially in the early and late parts of the season), but you don't want to eat that chewy part anyway, right?
Once you've separated all of the woody ends from the delicious end pieces, arrange the stalks on the baking sheet, drizzle with 1-1.5 tablespoons of olive oil (just eyeball it), and sprinkle salt/pepper on top. Toss gently with your hands to cover all of the asparagus with the seasoning and pop them into the oven.
The time it takes for the asparagus to roast is anywhere from 8-15 minutes depending on how crunchy you like your veggies. I like mine with a little give and a little crunch, so I roast mine for approximately 10 minutes. Ok, you know I'm not one for a timer, so lets be honest. I just fiddle with the asparagus at about the 8 minute mark, and if it bends slightly, I pretty much know it's finished. Or you can always eat one to make sure it tastes good...or maybe just two...
See? Wasn't that simple?