Cookin' with Kevin & Connie!

Fagottini di Asparagi al Forno - Baked asparagus bundles

This dish is one of my favorite preparations - topped with creamy mozzarella cheese & sweet prosciutto. You can also transform this dish into a light meal by serving the bundles along side a couple of fried eggs or a few slices of frittata.

Ingredients:

16-24 asparagus spears
4 thin prosciutto slices
4 fresh mozzarella cheese slices
1 tablespoon unsalted butter, cut into bits
salt to taste

Directions:

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Butter a 9-inch square baking dish.

Trim off any tough ends from the asparagus, cutting at the point at which they begin to turn white. Thicker spears benefit from a light peeling to within about 3 inches of the tips.

Bring a large saucepan three-fourths full of water to a boil. Add the asparagus and salt, reduce the heat to medium, and simmer until the spears are just beginning to bend when they are lifted by the stem end, 4-8 minutes; the timing will depend on the thickness of the asparagus. Using tongs, transfer to a platter and pat dry with paper towels.

Divide the asparagus evenly among the prosciutto slices, centering the spears across the end of each slice. Roll up the prosciutto, encasing the asparagus inside, to form 4 neat bundles.

Place the bundles in the prepared dish. Lay a mozzarella slice on top of each bundle. Dot the ends and tips of asparagus with butter.

Bake until the cheese is melted, about 10 minutes. Transfer to warmed individual plates and serve hot.