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Les Landes Asparagus Gratinee Recipe

This gratinee asparagus dish topped with a sabayon sauce is adapted from several recipes from Les Landes in Southwestern France. Gratinee refers to any dish topped with a sauce, bread crumbs, and/or cheese, then placed under the broiler to brown for a few minutes.

Prep Time: 30 minutes | Broil Time:  3 minutes | Servings:  4



  • 1 bunch of  asparagus
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 1/3 cup dry white wine
  • 1 sprig of rosemary
  • Strips of rind from 1/2 a lemon
  • 1/4 cup butter, cut into tablespoons pats and softened to room temperature
  • salt, to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground white pepper


  1. Snap the ends off  the asparagus and carefully peel the spears, then wash.  In a skillet, bring water to boil with 2 teaspoons of salt.  Add the asparagus to the boiling salted water and cover.  Cook until just tender, about 5 minutes.  Remove asaparagus and drain on paper towels.  Place a paper towel over asparagus to cover, and set aside.
  2. To prepare the sabayon sauce:  place egg yolks in small bowl and whisk together.  Set aside.  In medium saucepan, add dry white wine, rosemary, and lemon rind.  Boil for 5 minutes.   While bringing wine mixture to boil, bring about 2 cups of water to simmer in bottom of double boiler.
  3. After wine has boiled for 5 minutes, remove from heat.  Remove rosemary sprig and lemon rind.  Add eggs to top of  double boiler and place over simmering water in bottom of double boiler. (Very important that water is simmering and not at a rolling boil.)  Very slowly whisk in wine.  Continue whisking until the sauce begins to thicken, for about 2-3 minutes.  Gently incorporated the butter pats. one at a time, into the sabayon.  Taste sauce and seasonwith salt and pepper, as desired.
  4. Preheat broiler of oven.  Place asparagus in an au gratin dish, cover with sabayon, and place under broiler for 3 minutes.

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