French Cuisine: Asperges En Chemise

As we near the end of Spring and start to get ready for Summer, fresh asparagus, or ‘asperges‘ in French, can still be found in abundance at your local market or at the greengrocers.  Tender and delicious, this delicate dish is the perfect accompaniment to fish or lamb, or can simply be enjoyed on its own!  

The Asparagus Fact File

You can find asparagus in its peak season from February until the end of June.

Whether you prefer your asparagus to be thick or thin stemmed is simply a matter of choice. The stalks should be firm to touch and a bright green colour. Choose bunches with minimal flowering and tightly closed buds.

Asparagus is always best when fresh, so you should aim to cook it on the day that it is purchased. However, you can keep it in the fridge for up to five days afterwards. When storing asparagus in the fridge, wrap the ends of the stalks in a damp paper towel and place in a paper bag to keep them green and healthy!

There are many different ways to cook asparagus, but here at Babylangues we prefer to keep it simple …


  • 1 bunch of thin asparagus
  • 3 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 1 and a half tablespoons of grated Parmesan
  • 1 clove of minced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • half a teaspoon of ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon of lemon juice


Preheat your oven to 220 degrees Centigrade (425 degrees Fahrenheit).

  • Place the asparagus into a large mixing bowl and drizzle liberally with olive oil. Toss the spears to make sure that they are covered fully.
  • Add the Parmesan, minced garlic, salt and pepper.
  • Arrange the asparagus onto a sheet of baking paper on a single roasting tray.
  • Bake the asparagus in the preheated oven until just tender. Depending on the thickness of the stalks, this should usually be for 12-15 minutes.
  • Sprinkle with lemon juice just before serving.