Sitting in my backyard for hours on Shabbat morning is one of my greatest pleasures. I usually have a magazine or book in my hand, cookbooks and crossword puzzles stacked next to me on the table, and a hot cup of French Press. But when Spring arrives, it’s hard to sit still and I find myself getting up and down from my chair to look at something in the garden more closely. A rose on the bush that one week ago was practically bare. The first apple on a tree given to me on Mother’s Day by my friends Michael and Jenny, just two years ago. The tulip that came up from the bulbs given to me a few months ago by Elin, after her first trip to the Netherlands. I look at the blood orange tree and see that it’s covered in hundreds of fragrant tiny white flowers. I wait to get a glimpse of the hummingbird that visits every Shabbat morning and watch it draw nectar at the same time that I drink my coffee. I always smile and wonder who is watching who. Eventually I return to my book but yesterday my mind wandered to Pesach and vegetables, not the muted color of winter vegetables, but vegetables whose colors will remind me of my garden and the beauty of Spring.
Depending on the size of the asparagus, blanch to desired tenderness. My asparagus were very thin so I just cooked them for about 3 minutes in rapidly boiling salted water and then plunged them into a sink filled with ice water to stop the cooking and set the color.
1 orange bell pepper and 1 yellow bell pepper (red would be beautiful!)
3 cloves garlic
2 Tb olive oil
Peel the skin of the bell peppers and place them in a pot with garlic cloves and a pinch of salt. Cover with water, bring to a boil and cook for about 15 -20 minutes. Drain and allow to cool so they can be handled. Open up the peppers and remove seeds and stem. Place one pepper in a food processor with a 1/2 teaspoon of salt and one tablespoon of olive oil. Puree and place in a bowl. Repeat with the other pepper. Take a large serving place and spoon yellow pepper coulis on one side of plate and orange pepper coulis on the other. Lay asparagus across the top and drizzle with a little more olive oil.