Prosciutto Wrapped Asparagus
1 pound asparagus, medium thickness (abt 16 spears)
1/2 pound prosciutto sliced medium-thin
(abt 16 slices from the smaller end)
1 tablespoon olive oil
Heat the oven to 450 degrees. Cut off the bottom 1 to 1 1/2 inches of the asparagus spears and, if the spears are thick, peel them. Wrap a slice of prosciutto around each spear spiraling upward, with the fatty stripe of the ham at the bottom so it creates a barber pole effect up the spear.
Line a jellyroll pan with aluminum foil and smear it lightly with the olive oil. Arrange the wrapped spears in the pan and place in the oven. After 5 minutes, shake the pan vigorously to turn the spears. Roast another five minutes and shake again. Roast until the asparagus is very tender and the prosciutto is somewhat crisp, about 15 minutes total. Serve immediately.
This recipe yields 4 to 6 appetizer servings.
Comments: This extremely simple recipe is a combination of two old favorites: basic roast asparagus and steamed asparagus wrapped in prosciutto. The contrast between the soft asparagus and the crisp prosciutto is delicious. Serve this with iced Champagne and plenty of napkins to wipe asparagus juice from your fingers.