Martha’s Vineyard cookbook author and magazine editor Susie Middleton kindly gave us this recipe. She says “This is one of my very favorite preparations for fresh, local, big meaty spears of asparagus. There’s a depth of flavor here from the browning, yet the dish only takes about 15 minutes, start to finish.”
2 tsp. lemon juice
1 1/2 tsp. maple syrup
1/2 tsp. Dijon mustard
1 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
1 Tbsp. unsalted butter, divided
1 bunch asparagus, medium-thick, each spear trimmed to 6 inches in length
1/4 tsp. kosher salt
1/4 cup low-sodium chicken broth
1 tsp. fresh chervil or thyme, roughly chopped
Combine the lemon juice, maple syrup and Dijon mustard in a small bowl.
In a sauté pan, heat the olive oil and 1/2 Tbsp. butter over medium-high heat.
When the butter has melted and is bubbling, add the asparagus and salt; toss well to coat.
Arrange in one layer and cook, without stirring, until the undersides are nicely browned, 4-5 minutes.
Using tongs, turn each spear over and cook, without stirring, just until the other side is beginning to brown, about 2 minutes.
Carefully pour the chicken broth into the pan and immediately cover it.
Simmer until the liquid reduces almost completely and only 1 or 2 tsp. is left, about 2 minutes.
Uncover and take the pan off the heat.
Add the remaining butter, the lemon-maple-mustard mixture and most of the herbs.
Stir gently with a silicone spatula, incorporating any browned bits from the bottom, until the butter has melted and the pan sauce is slightly glazy.
Transfer the asparagus to a serving platter or plates and pour the pan sauce over it, scraping all the sauce out of the pan.
Garnish with remaining herbs.