Surprise your family and friends with the beautiful color and the tender taste of this asparagus dish. For a fresh, crisp asparagus, look for stalks that are straight and firm, and do not have a strong odor.
Ingredients (serves 4-6):
To Cook in the Rice Cooker:
For Blanching Asparagus:
To Add to Blender:
Measure rice accurately using the measuring cup that came with your rice cooker. Rinse rice quickly once, drain and place in the inner cooking pan. Add water to the corresponding water level for “LONG GRAIN WHITE,” or as listed in the ingredients. Cook the rice using the “LONG GRAIN WHITE” (if available), or the “MIXED” setting.
While the rice is cooking, blanch the asparagus. Boil the water in a saucepan and add 1 Tbsp. of salt. Also prepare 2 quarts ice water. Cut off the hard ends of the asparagus and discard. Cut the tips off the asparagus, about 2 inches, and reserve separately. Chop the remainder of the stalks into short, even pieces.
Add the chopped asparagus stalks (but not the tips), garlic and shallot to boiling water and blanch for 1 minute. Remove from boiling water and plunge into ice water to chill thoroughly.
Remove chilled asparagus from ice water and place in a blender with salt and softened butter. Puree until mixture is smooth – use a small amount of the blanching water to facilitate smooth blending if needed.
Repeat blanching and chilling procedure with asparagus tips; hold tips separately for garnishing.
Place oil in a small sauté pan (6-8” diameter) and heat until quite hot, almost smoking. Sprinkle scallops with salt and sear until lightly browned. When scallops are cooked, remove from the pan.
Add asparagus tips to the hot pan and toss quickly to heat through.
When rice completes cooking, gently fold in the asparagus puree.
Serve in bowls and garnish each serving with the scallops and asparagus tips.