It’s finally springtime here in NJ after a ruthless winter and we couldn’t be more excited. It’s a great time of year; the birds are outside our windows chirping, flowers are just starting to come out of the ground and lots of fresh local produce is beginning to arrive in our ShopRite store. I always try and choose fruits and vegetables that haven’t traveled the globe to get onto our table. The spring is a great time to start eating local produce, in our area we can get arugula, beets, leeks, strawberries and asparagus. These Asparagus Parmesan Breadsticks are an easy and quick, yet look fancy which makes them the perfect appetizer to serve during your Easter celebration.
PARMESAN ASPARAGUS BREADSTICKS
Adapted from: www.tasteofhome.com
1 Roll of Pillsbury Seemless Dough
24 Asparagus Stalks – Medium thickness
2-3 oz ShopRite Reduced Fat Cream Cheese – softened
1/2 Cup Parmesan Cheese – Grated
Start by preheating your oven to 400 F. Wash and cut the bottoms off of your asparagus. It is important when you are buying your asparagus to find stalks that are medium size in thickness. Really skinny stalks will burn or not be able to hold the dough.
On a lightly floured surface, roll your dough out until it’s about 1/4 inch in thickness trying to keep the rectangular shape as much as possible. When you’ve reached the desired size spread the cream cheese over the dough, this will be the easiest if the cream cheese has had some time out on the counter to soften. You do not need to leave a border so make sure you have a thin layer over the entire surface.
Using a pizza cutter slice your dough into thin strips about a 1/2 inch in thickness should be fine, not all my slices were the same but it won’t really matter. If you end up with some dough strips that are thicker than others just put them on thicker asparagus’. Take each dough strip and wrap the asparagus starting from the bottom and swirling it all the way to the top, you can stretch the dough a bit if you need more height. Place the wrapped asparagus with the end of the dough side down on a nonstick baking tray or one that has been sprayed with Pam or has a piece of parchment paper. Make sure they are at least an inch or so apart since the dough will rise a bit you don’t want them to stick together.
Using a fork whip the egg in a small bowl. Coat the asparagus breadsticks with the egg wash using a brush, making sure to get some egg over both the dough and the asparagus.
Using a spoon sprinkle the Parmesan cheese over top of the asparagus breadsticks, this was messy for me and the cheese that wasn’t on anything ended up burning so try your best to keep it on the asparagus and not the tray. Bake 10-12 minutes until the asparagus has softened and the dough has browned a bit. Serve immediately if possible or make them ahead of time and reheat them in an oven at 325 for 5 minutes.
Enjoy!! – Nicole & Susan
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