News Asparagus is on the menu at Boqueria this spring The esparragos y romesco at Boqueria is a perfect dish for spring. Photo Credit: Boqueria By MEREDITH DELISO email@example.com @themerryness April 15, 2014 3:51 PM Print Share fbShare Tweet Email Try this @home and tell us how you did! Tweet @amNewYork When Chef Marc Vidal was looking for a way to create one of his favorite dishes from his native Barcelona -- grilled spring onions in a Romesco sauce -- he subbed in the ever-versatile asparagus. "Here it's very difficult to get spring onions," said Vidal, executive chef for tapas bar Boqueria(53 W. 19th St., 212-255-4160; 171 Spring St., 212-343-4255, boquerianyc.com). "But you can get really good asparagus." Vidal serves the dish, Esparragos y Romesco, as a special when the vegetable is available at the market. And being that asparagus is currently in season, it's the perfect time to try the tasty appetizer or side yourself, which can be paired with grilled fish for a heart-healthy meal. Vidal recommends making the hazelnut-, tomato- and nyora pepper-based Romesco sauce in advance, so it can be added to the asparagus once it's off the grill. "Make sure the sauce has a good amount of acidity so it goes well with the vegetable," said Vidal. The chef also advises to not overcook the asparagus. "Two minutes is more than enough," said Vidal. "It should be crunchy." Esparragos y Romesco Grilled green asparagus with Romesco sauce Ingredients18 pieces green asparagus (2 oz.)1 oz. Romesco sauce (see recipe) DirectionsSeason asparagus with salt, pepper and olive oil.Sear until charred and cooked through, about two minutes.Heat up the Romesco in a large saute pan, transfer asparagus to saute pan and coat evenly.Serve with shaved raw asparagus salad as a garnish. Romesco recipeMakes 1 quarter Ingredients4 vine-ripened tomatoes1 whole head of garlic3/4 cup hazelnut1/8 loaf stirato bread1 2/3 cloves of garlic, peeled1/3 cup loose parsley leaves1/2 cup olive oil1/3 cup sherry vinegar2 1/2 tablespoons water1/4 cup nyora pepper puree (see recipe) DirectionsDe-stem the tomatoes and cut an “x” on the top. Line a sheet pan with foil and place tomatoes on top with 4 garlic heads. Add olive oil and put in oven for 1 hour at 400 degrees. When done, peel the charred tomato skins.Deep-fry the hazelnuts until golden brown.Deep-fry the stirato bread until crispy.Blend all ingredients completely until smooth.Add salt to taste.Freeze extra for future use. Nyora pepper puree recipeYields 1 cup Ingredients1/2 pack nyora peppers (160 grams) DirectionsCut peppers in half. Soak overnight in warm water, covered with plastic wrap.Drain peppers from water and remove the seeds and stems.Blend peppers.Pass through a very fine tamis/sieve.Freeze extra for future use. By MEREDITH DELISO firstname.lastname@example.org @themerryness Meredith has been a features editor with amNewYork since 2013, covering dining, health, travel and books. Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Comments We're revamping our Comments section. Learn more and share your input.