Friday, June 3, 2016

Four Cheese Asparagus Gratin

Cheesy and gooey, this Four Cheese Asparagus Gratin is a easy side dish that's a showstopper!

One of the most delicious vegetables to make this Spring are asparagus. They are the best this time of year. Top them with a cheesy sauce and they are a delicious side dish, especially for Sunday dinner.

This dish is also great with broccoli florets or halved brussels sprouts. I love to add a little lemon zest but it's completely optional. 

Four Cheese Asparagus Gratin
Adapted from The Cookie Rookie
  • 2 pounds asparagus, trimmed
  • 3 cups water
  • 1/2 cup freshly shredded sharp cheddar
  • 1/2 cup freshly shredded mozzarella, divided
  • 1/3 cup freshly shredded asiago
  • 1/3 cup freshly shredded parmesan
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons flour (I used regular unbleached all purpose; white whole wheat works great too)
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon lemon zest (optional)
  • salt, to taste
  • pepper, to taste
Preheat your broiler and arrange the racks to the top. Spray a sheet pan with oil and set aside.

Add the water to a large skillet and bring to a boil. Add asparagus and cook, covered, for 3 to 4 minutes, or until crisp tender. (Cook longer if you like softer vegetables) With tongs, carefully remove the asparagus and place on the sheet pan in a even layer. Sprinkle with garlic powder, salt, and pepper. Set aside.

Pour 1 cup of cooking water into a measuring cup and discard the rest. Set the reserved 1 cup aside. 

In the skillet, add the butter and melt over medium heat. Add flour and whisk until smooth. Cook about 1 to 2 minutes. Whisk in reserved 1 cup cooking water until smooth. Cook for about 2 to 3 minutes, or until thickened. Turn off the heat and remove from the burner. Gradually stir in the cheddar, asiago, parmesan, and 1/4 cup of the mozzarella until melted. Add lemon zest and season to taste with salt and pepper.

Pour the cheese sauce over the asparagus and sprinkle with the remaining 1/4 cup mozzarella. Broil for about 5 minutes, or until browned and bubbly. Carefully remove from the oven and move to a serving platter. Serve and enjoy! 

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