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Crispy hen’s egg, griddled asparagus,
asparagus purée, burnt onion                                               preparation time

                                                                           30 mins to 1 hour
Ingredients                                                                cooking time
                                                                           Serves 4
For the burnt onion powder
 750g/1lb 10oz onions, peeled
                                                                         By Daniel Clifford
For the asparagus velouté                                                From Saturday Kitchen
 50g/2oz butter
                                                                         This innovative recipe puts
 2 small onions, roughly chopped                                         together onion powder with
 3 garlic cloves, roughly chopped                                        sweet asparagus, soft eggs
                                                                         and crisp potato.
 750g/1lb 10oz asparagus, chopped
 1 litre/1¾ pints white chicken stock, hot
 200ml/7fl oz beurre noisette
 200ml/7fl oz boiled double cream
 150g/5½oz baby spinach, washed
For the asparagus purée
 750g/1lb 10oz asparagus, chopped
 150ml/5fl oz beurre noisette
 125ml/4fl oz boiled double cream
 115g/4oz washed baby spinach
For the crispy hen’s eggs
 2 tbsp white wine vinegar
 4 free-range eggs
 4 large potatoes, made into spaghetti using a spiralizer
For the griddled asparagus
 8 large asparagus spears, trimmed
 2 tbsp olive oil
 salt, to season

Preparation method
1. For the burnt onion powder, preheat the oven to 65C/150F/Gas:
  lowest possible setting.
2. Heat a dry frying pan until hot.
3. Cut the onions in half and place cut side down onto the frying pan
  and leave until very charred. Turn the onions over and repeat on the
  other side. Transfer the onions onto a baking tray and bake in the
  oven on a very low heat for 12 hours.
4. When completely dry, blend the onions in a food processor to a fine
  powder. Sieve the onion powder and set aside until needed.
5. For the asparagus velouté, heat a frying pan until medium hot. Add

                                     the butter, onions and garlic and fry gently for 4-5 minutes until just
                                   6. Add the chopped asparagus, stir well, then pour the hot chicken
                                     stock over. Bring the mixture up to the boil and simmer for six
                                   7. Add the beurre noisette and cream to the asparagus pan and mix
                                   8. Pour the asparagus mixture into a blender, add the baby spinach and
                                     blend to a fine purée.
                                   9. Strain the asparagus purée through a fine sieve into a bowl over iced
                                     water, to chill and keep the colour. Set aside until needed.
                                   10. For the asparagus purée, bring a pan of salted water to the boil,
                                      add the asparagus and cook for a few minutes until soft. Drain the
                                      asparagus, then plunge immediately into cold water to refresh.
                                      Drain again, and pat the asparagus dry.
                                   11. Blend the cooked asparagus with the remaining ingredients to a
                                      fine purée.
                                   12. Strain the purée through a fine sieve into a bowl over iced water, to
                                      chill and keep the colour. Set aside until needed.
                                   13. For the crispy hen’s eggs, heat a deep fat fryer to 190C/375F.
                                      Alternatively heat vegetable oil in a deep sided, heavy-based pan,
                                      until a breadcrumb sizzles and turns golden brown when dropped
                                      in. (CAUTION: hot oil can be dangerous. Do not leave unattended.)
                                   14. Bring a deep pan of water to the boil, add the vinegar then the eggs
                                      and cook for 2½ minutes. Drain the eggs and place immediately
                                      into cold water to refresh and stop the cooking process. Peel the
                                      shells from the eggs and trim them so they are nice and round.
                                   15. Pat the peeled eggs dry then wrap them in potato spaghetti. Gently
                                      lower the potato wrapped eggs into the hot oil and cook until crisp.
                                   16. Remove the eggs from the oil with a slotted spoon and drain on
                                      kitchen paper. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
                                   17. For the griddled asparagus, bring a large pan of salted water to the
                                      boil, add the asparagus and boil for 2 mins 20 seconds, then drain
                                      and plunge immediately into cold water to refresh. Drain the
                                      asparagus again and pat dry.
                                   18. Heat a griddle pan until medium hot. Drizzle the asparagus with
                                      olive oil, sprinkle with salt and griddle them on a medium heat until
                                      charred on each side.
                                   19. To serve, sprinkle the onion powder onto the griddled asparagus.
                                      Spoon three stripes of asparagus purée across each serving plate,
                                      and place two griddled asparagus covered in the onion powder
                                      across the purée. Place the deep-fried egg on top of the asparagus.
                                      Pour the velouté into small jugs and serve alongside.

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