Celebrate Asparagus Season with This Flan Recipe from Tullulah’s

Spring has arrived and with it, the freshest flavors of the season and our latest issue! Stop by your  farm stand, farmers market or green grocer as leafy spring greens, asparagus, peas, ramps, spring onions, garlic scapes, herbs, rhubarb and more are back. We have been collecting a few of our favorite springtime recipes to share, beginning with a truly delectable asparagus flan from Chef Steven Scalesse of Tullulah’s in Bay Shore.

Asparagus Flan
Recipe by Chef Steven Scalesse of Tullulah’s, Bay Shore
Serves 10

1 bunch of asparagus, trimmed
½ bunch parsley, roughly chopped
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 quart heavy cream
12 egg yolks
2 tablespoon sugar
Salt and pepper to taste
4 gelatin sheets

Preheat oven to 325°. Bloom sheets of gelatin in cold water. Set aside. Cut trimmed asparagus into 1-inch pieces. Heat olive oil in a heavy saucepan, then add sliced asparagus and chopped parsley. Reduce heat to medium and sweat down until tender. Add heavy cream to sauce pan and steep flavors together. Separate egg yolks from whites, placing the yolks into a large mixing bowl. Add gelatin sheets to saucepan and whisk them until they dissolve. With a hand blender, puree cream mixture until fine and smooth. Strain mixture through a mesh strainer catching large particles. Add mixture to egg yolks and whisk vigorously, tempering eggs with hot liquid. Set aside to rest and skim bubbles off the top.

Place liquid into ramekins (1½-inch deep), and cook in hot water bath for 25 to 30 minutes. They should still have a little shake to them when you pull them out (like Jell-O), and they will set the rest of the way when cooling off.

Pairs great with seared filet mignon, roasted chicken or butter-poached lobster.

Cilantro & Parsley Pesto with Sunflower Seeds (no nuts)
Recipe by Natalia de Cuba Romero

1 cup cilantro leaves (rinsed and patted or spun dry)
1 cup flat-leaf parsley leaves (rinsed and patted or spun dry)
½ to 1 cup extra virgin olive oil
4 cloves garlic (about 2 tbsp)
½ cup unroasted sunflower seeds (may be toasted in a dry pan for 30 seconds to a minute)
2 generous pinches of salt
Fresh lemon or lime juice to taste
½ cup grated grana padano, Parmigiano Reggiano, or other fine grating cheese

Place all ingredients except cheese in a food processor and spin until well-blended. If you are planning to freeze then stop here and spoon pesto into ice cube trays and freeze. Otherwise, hand-mix cheese into pesto and serve with pasta or as a spread for crusty bread.
Additional ideas: stir in fresh peas and ¼ cup queso fresco (Mexican crumbling cheese), crumbled, or top with grilled shrimp.


Cold Rice Noodle Salad with Radish, Cucumber, Pea Pods and Creamy Tahini Dressing
Recipe by Natalia de Cuba Romero

8 oz. rice noodles, prepared according to package directions and cooled
5 small radishes, greens removed and cut into tiny matchsticks (about 2 tbsp)
¼ hothouse cucumber, cut into tiny matchsticks (about 2 tsp)
(optional – a handful of peapods – peas removed – cut into tiny matchsticks; microgreens; toasted sesame seeds, matchstick carrots)

2 tbsp mayonnaise or Veganaise
1 tsp rice vinegar
½ tsp sugar
2 generous tbsp tahini
1-2 cloves garlic, pressed or minced fine
Sriracha or other Asian hot sauce, to taste (I did one generous squeeze)
¼ salt or to taste

Mix salad ingredients together in a bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk together dressing ingredients. Add dressing to bowl mix thoroughly, adjust seasoning and serve.


No-Cook Cannellini and Garlic Scape Dip
Recipe by Natalia de Cuba Romero

4-5 garlic scapes, crown removed and stems trimmed of any woodiness at the bottom
2 15.5 oz cans cannellini (white) beans, rinsed and drained
1 generous tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 tsp dried thyme (4 tsp fresh)

Place all ingredients in food processor and blend until smooth. Serve with baguette toasts, crackers or fresh vegetable sticks.

This recipe was originally published in April 2014.