Asparagus is cooked when it is tender-crispy or crunchy and not mushy and limp. It should turn from a vibrant green to a dull olive green. However, if it’s not well cooked, the spear will be too hard for a fork to pierce, while overcooked asparagus tends to fall apart when you poke it. There’s a common belief among asparagus lovers, which I myself held true for years, that thin asparagus is tender while thick asparagus is woody and tough. It seemed to make sense, at least visually. And if I happened to get a thick spear of asparagus that was surprisingly tender, I just raised my eyebrows and thought it a lucky accident.



Should asparagus be soft after cooking?

Start checking really thin stalks after just a minute of simmering. This side dish recipe doesn’t need any other seasoning, although you could add some fresh thyme or dill if you’d like. Make sure that the asparagus is fresh. When you buy it, it should be firm, with no soft or wet spots.

How do you know when asparagus is done cooking?

Cover and cook, shaking occasionally, until bright green but still crisp, about 3 minutes. Uncover and continue cooking until the asparagus is tender when pierced with the tip of a knife, 5–10 minutes more (the thicker the spears, the longer the cook time).

Why did my asparagus come out soft?

You’re overcooking it.

Because it only takes a few minutes to cook, keep a close eye on it to avoid soggy, limp stems as the outcome. Take it out of the oven or off the stove a minute or so before you think it’s done to avoid overcooking. Another way to prevent overcooking is to shock the asparagus in an ice bath.

Is asparagus supposed to be hard or soft?

“Always choose firm asparagus. As it ages, it wilts, and you want to make sure that the asparagus is firm and vibrant, whether it be green, purple, or white,” Olivieri says.

How to cook asparagus?

Here is everything you will ever need to know about how to cook asparagus. When cooking asparagus, you can tie them into little bundles, which makes them easier to remove. Drop these bundles or individual spears into some boiling water, cover and cook for three to five minutes, depending on the thickness of the spears.

What is the difference between thin and thick asparagus?

Thin spears of asparagus tend to be younger and fresher in flavour, whilst thicker spears will have been left to grow for longer and have a more pronounced flavour. Try and use your asparagus as soon as possible, but if you don’t use it straight away, a good tip is to store it standing up in a jug of water in the fridge.

Can you eat raw asparagus?

A splash of soy and a sprinkle of sesame seeds work well. You can, in fact, eat asparagus raw. One of my favourite raw asparagus recipes is Miss Foodwise’s Asparagus ribbons and pomegranate pearls salad.

When is the best time to eat asparagus?

The delicate spears of this seasonal vegetable can be blanched, griddled, roasted or served raw. We get asparagus for as little as two months of the year, so it’s well worth making the most of it when it appears, which is somewhere from around the end of April into June. The earliest shoots are called ‘sprue’.