Insider's Viewpoint: Shari Steinbach, Meijer

Spring is almost here and in Michigan we start to think about the fresh asparagus that will soon hit our stores. Asparagus is a nutritional powerhouse with many health promoting benefits:
  • There are only 4 calories per medium spear.
  • Asparagus is a good source of potassium and vitamin C. It also provides 2 to 3 grams of fiber per serving.
  • Asparagus has more folic acid than any other vegetable. Just one ½ cup serving provides more than half of the recommended daily allowance of folic acid.
  • According to the National Cancer Institute, asparagus is a good source of glutathione, a potent cancer fighter.

Roasted Asparagus
If you have never roasted asparagus, this is something you have to try. The result is delicious! Roasting makes the asparagus more flavorful and sweeter. Wash and trim fresh asparagus spears. Spread spears on a large rimmed baking sheet. Drizzle spears with olive oil and roll them around to coat lightly.
Roast medium-thick spears in a preheated 450°F oven about 15 minutes; thin ones about 10 minutes, occasionally shaking the pan to roll them around for even browning. Test with a fork to determine doneness. Spears should be tender throughout and lightly browned.

Variations: Add 2-3 cloves chopped garlic to the spears before roasting. Or drizzle with balsamic vinegar or lemon juice after roasting. Roasted asparagus is great combined with pasta or rice for side dished or salads and is especially good on a vegetable pizza.

Shari Steinbach, MS RD,
Healthy Living Manager



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