Difficulty Level: Easy
Time Required: 5 minutes
White asparagus must be peeled, as the outside is fibrous and even woody at times.
The usual way to peel asparagus is to hold it in your non-dominant hand, gripping it gently right below the head with the thumb and index finger and resting the stalk on the palm and wrist.
You can use a common vegetable peeler or an asparagus peeler. Make sure it is sharp. You may use a paring knife if you have nothing else, but you will have greater wastage.
Starting just below the head, peel toward the cut end. Turn the asparagus slightly and repeat until the whole stalk has been peeled.
Once all the asparagus has been peeled, cut off the cut ends about one inch up. In doing this, if you notice any more fibers sticking to the asparagus, peel it away.
Keep the peeled asparagus in a damp kitchen towel until ready to cook, usually right before serving.
You may wish to apportion the asparagus and tie bundles big enough to serve one with kitchen string. A portion is usually thought of as 12 to 16 ounces, kitchen-ready.