A quick and easy sidedish using California red seedless grapes and asparagus, pan sautéed and topped with a simple wine sauce
~by Regan Jones, RD
Disclosure: The California Table Grape Commission compensated me as co-owner of The Recipe ReDux to manage this recipe contest. I am therefore not eligible to win prizes associated with the contest. Opinions expressed are my own.
Being a mother has taught me a lot of things:
- Weight gain and stretchy skin come come naturally after you become pregnant; selflessness does not.
- The easiest way to get your child to start talking is to pick up the phone and begin speaking with another adult on the phone (works every time).
- Laundry multiplies by a factor of 4 times the current age of your oldest child (this one is still a mystery to me, but I know it has to be true based on the volume of clothes in my laundry baskets).
- God has a sense of humor. (While I can't prove this, I'm certain it's true as well. How else do you explain having two children with virtually the same DNA who have almost polar opposite tastes for food?)
And it's this last fact that I
want to pull my hair out over find myself revisiting on a daily basis.
Let me back up and explain one thing that you may not know about me. Years ago I was a different person. Before I was known as "Mommy", before Mark Zuckerburg
took away all our free time gifted us with Facebook, when "pinning" was something that a seamstress did to the hem of your dress, and before I was @ReganJonesRD on Twitter, I was Regan Jones RD on TV. I used to be a full-time media spokesperson and one of the frequent topics I discussed on air was "kid's nutrition" - a topic I was well qualified to discuss since I was an RD, right?
God love all the "nutrition experts" out there who talk about what to feed a kid if you don't have a kid, but I'm sorry. If you don't have a child, you're kidding yourself if you think you fully "understand" what parents go through at mealtimes. You can make recommendations - good recommendations - and that's nice. But thinking you have all the answers or can relate, or worse yet, that you know better than they do because you're an RD? I refer back to my earlier statement:
God has a sense of humor.
And he will enjoy seeing you
fail miserably constructively try to implement those recommendations to your own children. I know. I'm living that reality.
If you read my story on my struggles with FitFramed earlier this week, at this point you're probably thinking to yourself as you were then "What the hell does this have to do with grapes?"
EVERYTHING with picky eaters has to do with grapes.
Grapes are like gold in my house. They are hands down - as far as my tired little brain can tell - the one food that we all agree on.
No... I'm serious. I know I'm being paid to run this recipe contest, but I don't lie on matters of food preferences and pickiness. Read the disclosure: opinions expressed are my own.
I mean, there are plenty of foods we'll all eat/tolerate. But I think grapes are the only one that when you say "Who wants grapes" everybody says "me!" (And I'm lumping my spouse in on this one 'cause frankly, it's his picky DNA that's at work with these two. I'm convinced of that fact. He's about as bad as they are when it comes to what he doesn't like.) To bring it full circle, the universal love of grapes in my house is why I'm sharing a 2nd recipe with you today for our sponsored recipe contest with the California Table Grape Commission. We always have them in our 'fridge; they stay fresh throughout the week and having shared a white grape recipe earlier, it just didn't feel right not to give our red pals some screentime as well. So here you go:
Sautéed Asparagus and Grapes
Much like the "englightenment" I received after becoming a mom, I didn't discover cooked grapes until recently. If you read the other ReDux posts for this month's contest, you'll likely see a lot of these same revelations. People know how delicious grapes are fresh, but discovering how tasty they are when cooked is such an eye opening experience. Cooked grapes burst in your mouth with this warm, slightly sweeter than fresh, soft body of fleshy fruit that's addictive to eat. In this dish, I've softened them and then reduced down a little wine, Dijon mustard and maple syrup. Poured over cooked and salted asparagus, it's a wonderful flavor combo - that takes only a few minutes and handful of ingredients to prepare.
If I could rewind time, I'd tell 20-something Regan that she didn't know nearly as much as she thought about what to feed picky eaters, but I'd reward her for trying by sharing this recipe with her and my new found love of cooked grapes.
ad: This recipe for Sauteed Asparagus and Grapes is the perfect way to combine fruits and veggies in a side dish! Tweet this
Sauteéd Asparagus and Grapes
Serves 3 to 4
- 2 teaspoons olive oil, divided
- 1 pound asparagus, trimmed
- 1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
- 1 cup red California seedless grapes
- 1/4 cup white wine (I used Zenato Pinto Grigio)
- 1/4 teapoon Dijon mustard
- 2 teaspoons maple syrup
- Heat 1 teaspoon olive oil over medium-high in a large nonstick skillet. Add asparagus and sprinkle with salt. Sauté 5 to 10 minutes or just until tender. Remove from pan and set aside.
- Add remaining 1 teaspoon oil to pan; add grapes and sauté 5 minutes. Reduce heat to medium-low and pour in wine. Continue cooking 5 additional minutes or until wine is slightly reduced. Using a slotted spoon, remove grapes from pan (leaving behind cooking liquid) and spoon grapes over asparagus.
- Add mustard and syrup to liquid in pan, stirring briskly to combine. Cook an additional 2 to 3 minutes or until sauce is reduced and slightly thickened. Pour over asparagus and grapes.