Orange and Mustard-Marinated Asparagus

I remember what a revelation it was to my mom when she learned to cook asparagus for just 4 minutes. (She’d set a timer — the 4 minutes was sacrosanct.) As a kid, she dreaded seeing it on her plate because it was always cooked to stringy, pale-green mush. But when just tender, and not at all mushy, and vibrantly green, it’s such a pleasing, juicy vegetable. Cooked this way, it’s always been one of my favorites. This method of marinating is one I particularly like for super-fresh, springtime asparagus, but even in the off-season, it does wonders to make it interesting and delicious when it’s not exactly at its peak. You’ll cook it immediately, shock in cold water, then combine with this zesty marinade. The hot, sweet mustard gives the marinade distinction — I love it with my Stovetop Maple-Ale Mustard (see recipe below) — but you can use Dijon or any other hot or horseradish mustard if that’s what you’ve got on hand. — Lukas Volger

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