The River Café is a quintessential piece of London’s fine dining history, setting the bar for high-end Italian eateries throughout the city. Travel the path of this storied restaurant with culinary legends Ruth Rogers and Rose Gray, and recreate some of their most famous dishes at home. This white asparagus with bottarga butter will change the way you view this spring produce staple.
We love the contrast between the delicate taste of the asparagus and the rich salty bottarga. Unlike with green asparagus, you need to be ruthless when peeling the stalks of white ones.
- 32 white asparagus spears
- 3 1/2 ounce Sardinian bottarga from grey mullet roe
- 9 ounces unsalted butter, softened
- juice of 1 lemon
For the asparagus
Snap the tough ends from the asparagus spears. Peel the stalks (up to the tips) using a potato peeler.
Grate about three-quarters of the bottarga stick on the finest holes of a cheese grater (reserve the remainder of the bottarga stick for adding at the end).
Beat the softened butter with the grated bottarga. Add the lemon juice and black pepper to taste. Check for seasoning and add a little sea salt, if required.
Bring a large pot of salted water to the boil. Add the asparagus and simmer for about 4 minutes, depending on the thickness of the spears, or until a knife tip can gently pierce the stalk. Drain the asparagus and arrange on four warm plates.
Put a dessert spoonful of the bottarga butter on top of each serving of warm asparagus. Grate the remaining bottarga over the plates and season with a little more black pepper. Serve immediately.