- In a saucepan, sauté the barley and onion in the oil and 30 ml (2 tablespoons) of butter over medium heat until the onion is translucent, about 5 minutes. Deglaze with the white wine.
- Add the broth. Bring to a boil, cover and simmer over low heat for about 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Uncover and stir constantly until the broth is almost completely absorbed, about 10 minutes. Add the asparagus and cook for 5 minutes or until the asparagus is al dente.
- Stir in the remaining butter, Parmesan and basil. Adjust the seasoning.
- Delicious as an accompaniment to meat, poultry or fish.
You’ve probably noticed that the asparagus stem is harder than the tip. Tips therefore require less time to cook. An asparagus steamer allows you to place the vegetables upright in a metal basket. This is placed in boiling water, which allows the asparagus to be evenly cooked. The same effect can be achieved by using an empty food can, open at both ends. Cook the asparagus upright so the heads don’t spoil.
Asparagus will store longer in the fridge if you wrap it in a damp cloth and place in a plastic bag.