Asparagus Gratin & Staying Home

These are tough times my friends.

Staying inside, not seeing friends, not going to restaurants and gyms; not going to work; and just not socializing period, has been a real challenge for many, especially me, who is a social butterfly (at least that's what my teachers told my mother when I was in school: "Stacey does not stop talking in class.....she is a social butterfly").

I am feeling edgy (more so than usual), and worried about the future of my friends who own small businesses.....retail, hospitality and the restaurant industry will take so long to come back to life, and many of my favorite places may never re-open.

I have made so many friends in the restaurant community over the years. Chefs, bartenders, servers and PR people, it has become a big part of my life.

Remember, NYC and NJ are the hardest hit areas in the country right now, with many communities being hot spots for this virus, stressing our healthcare industry, not to mention the delivery people and grocery workers.

The "STAY HOME" message seems to be helping somewhat, but for how long?

So, what have I been doing during this quarantine period?

I have been doing my best to comply with the rules (I am a rule follower, believe it or not!).

I go to the post office and supermarket once a week, as necessary. I wear a mask, and don't touch my face. I wash my hands as much as possible. My hands are cracking and bleeding from dryness.

I've been spending my quarantine days trying to help others.

Leaving food and treats on friends' porches, waving from a distance.....Hopefully, inspiring people to be better cooks by posting my goofy instagram live stories and cooking demos with easy quarantine meals.,
And donating to restaurant GoFundMe pages, who really need us right now.

I am just thinking out loud, checking in........hoping you are all doing ok.
So many of my friends are delivering meals to hospitals from their restaurants or sewing masks and donating them........I know a lot of great people!

We are all making concessions and sacrifices right now, trying not to waste food, and cutting back on the things we take for granted.

I appreciate you all very much, and the blog and instagram has been keeping me sane. My friends are the best!

Cooking simple home cooked meals makes me happy, and I hope it does for you too.

Spring is here (technically), so if you can find some asparagus, I recommend you prepare them this way.

It doesn't get better than this!

Asparagus Gratin:

1 big bunch of asparagus, ends trimmed (I love the medium to fat ones best)

Lay the asparagus in a baking dish or on a baking sheet.

In a bowl, combine:

1 garlic clove, shaved on a mircoplane
handful of seasoned breadcrumbs (panko are best)
a tbsp of grated Parmesan cheese (or more)
a drizzle of olive oil
kosher salt & pepper
some lemon zest

Pour this oily breadcrumb mixture over the asparagus, and drizzle some more olive oil all over the asparagus.

Roast in a 400F for about 20 minutes.
Serve immediately.

Stay healthy, and positive.

Hang in there friends.


Ciao Chow Linda said…
First of all, the asparagus. I love the fat ones too, and will be making this recipe. And Miss Social Butterfly, brava to you for helping and leaving food at friends and neighbors’ homes, contributing to go fund me campaigns etc. I fear for these small restauranteurs and business owners too, whose employees are one paycheck away from disaster. I don’t know about your town, but here we have a lot of needy people who have trouble paying for basic grocery needs, and there is a grassroots group organizing funds and groceries for them too. It’s a scary time but also a time of great generosity by many. Thanks for doing your part. ❤️
I love asparagus this way. I swear your baking pan looks exactly like mine. Stay safe and well!
Anonymous said…
Hi Stacey
Love this post , lets pray this will all be over sooner than later.
In the meantime keeping cooking, sharing and always keep Baking!

Your friend,
Michele S.
Bebe said…
I prefer the mediumish ones, too. Not those skinny ones.

I was also a problem child in school. Checkmarks on “Lacks self control”… Show me a first or second grade child with “self control” and I will show you a very locked down kid!!! My Mother checked it out and found I was finishing work before the other kids and had to sit there, bored senseless, while they finished. So I chatted. Not good. Wise teachers came up with extra work for me. I loved it.

This will be over soon. We have learned a lot. We have never - in our time - had to go through a war here. Much of the deprivation and control was evident during WWII, but few are alive to remember it. We will survive…

I may be the only person who had nearly run out of tp before this mess started. When I merrily went to Costco online to order some, reality smacked me in the face. It became more clear when I scored a big box at a big price from Walmart - and it had to take days to come all the way to SoCal from Mesquite, TX.

Sometimes the times we live in are too interesting… but we make it out on the other side...