I’m at the grocery store awhile ago and a man is staring at a pathetic package of cleaned corn, bitterly complaining that the store has no corn in a husk. That’s because corn doesn’t come into season until summer. Your sorry corn, sir, may be coming from Argentina. But it’s not in season here. And the carbon footprint it took to get the corn into your impatient little hands is gigantic.
Granted, sometimes it’s hard to know what’s in season since the modern produce section of a grocery store has no seasons. Tomatoes in December? Of course! Brussels sprouts in August? Absolutely! But they’re all coming from somewhere else far, far away. I have strayed occasionally and bought Brussels sprouts in August but I am ashamed while I’m doing it.
My late father-in-law, bless his soul, never ate watermelon before the Fourth of July. I think his mother told him it was poison, but the real reason is that it’s not in season in the South until then. Down here, we wait for tomato season like a dog staring at a meaty bone just out of reach. I think the only people who buy tomatoes in a Southern supermarket are Yankees because the rest of us know better.
So, back to asparagus. You can roast them in the oven, but grilling them is so much faster. All you do is this: Trim the ends of the asparagus and put them on a rimmed cookie sheet. Sprinkle them liberally with extra virgin olive oil, salt and pepper. Fire up the grill to medium hot and lay the asparagus on the grill perpendicular to the grate. Turn them occasionally and grill until they’re beginning to char.
If you want a nice citrus touch, sprinkle them with lemon juice. Yes, I know lemons are not in season here. They’re never in season here. So I’m a hypocrite.