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How to Prepare Asparagus

How to Prepare Asparagus

Check Out: Roasted Asparagus Recipe

When I first started cooking with asparagus, I made the noob cook’s mistake of using them right away after rinsing. As a result, the stalk was almost indigestible & inedible. I later found out that I was missing an important step in the preparation of asparagus prior to cooking – which is to remove the fibrous skin on the stalk without which the asparagus will taste woody and indigestible. No matter which type of asparagus (pencil-thin or thick stalks; green or white) or cooking method (roasting, stir-frying or blanching), your asparagus will taste much better from this additional preparation step prior to usage.  Here is a simple, step-by-step photos tutorial on how to prep asparagus before cooking.

Click on photo to view full size. Step-by-Step
How to Prepare Asparagus After rinsing the aspragus, trim (or snap) and discard the lower ends of the asparagus spears which is tough and hard.
How to Prepare Asparagus Hold the top of the aspragus spears with one hand and a vegetable peeler with the other hand. Using a vegetable peeler, shave the outer skin all the way down the stalk. Rotate the asparagus spear to cover all round the asparagus.
How to Prepare Asparagus Repeat for each asparagus spear. Your asparagus is now ready for cooking!

Leave a Comment

12 Responses to “How to Prepare Asparagus”

  1. Meg — December 7, 2010 @ 10:13 pm

    Hi Wiffy,
    Thanks for sharing! By the way, do you know how to prepare celery? I tried removing the fibrous skin but it’s not as straightforward as asparagus due to the groves. I love celery but somehow couldn’t get it right, like those served in restaurants, very tender.
    Thanks in advance!


    • jur replied: — December 8th, 2010 @ 12:12 am

      hi Meg, sorry pardon me but i thought celery is supposed to eat crunchy?
      My dad taught me to break into half and you can pull off some skin from there.

      hope wiffy can provide another method too :)


    • wiffy replied: — December 8th, 2010 @ 2:03 pm

      Hi Meg, sorry I’m not so sure about celery. The skin do not bother me as much as asparagus do. I usually just slice them halfway lengthwise and slice thinly for stir-fries.


    • mycookinghut replied: — December 9th, 2010 @ 5:19 am

      For celery – I usually use vegetable peeler to peel the outer skin off like what wiffy did for the asparagus.


      • wiffy replied: — December 10th, 2010 @ 5:52 pm

        thanks leemei, I’ll try it out ;)

  2. lisaiscooking — December 8, 2010 @ 5:45 am

    Asparagus is just the best. Peeled and then roasted or steamed, it’s hard to beat!


  3. masterofboots — December 8, 2010 @ 8:16 am

    oops, and i have always thought it is because i never stir fry them long enough! now i know.


  4. Little Inbox — December 8, 2010 @ 5:02 pm

    I do the same way like you too.
    Surprisingly those Western country that can get fresh asparagus does not need this steps. They cook it directly.


  5. abi — December 20, 2010 @ 11:13 pm

    Will this step affect a lot in the vitamins/fibre that we take in with the asparagus?Cause people also consume vegetables for the sake of the fibre/vitamins it provide.


    • wiffy replied: — December 22nd, 2010 @ 9:35 am

      if the woody outer skin do not bother you at all (it bother me a lot because it is almost indigestible), then you don’t have to do this step. I think there is still fibre left on the stalk, and as for vitamins, not overcooking the veggies is crucial too :)



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