Asparagus Wrapped in Serrano Ham: A Spanish Classic

The classic pairing of fresh asparagus and salty jamon (or Serrano ham, the Spanish equivalent of Italian prosciutto) in this recipe gives complex flavors and wonderful contrasts to an otherwise very simple appetizer.

The basic preparation of this quick and easy party appetizer also means that you can have it ready at a moment's notice to share with your guests. There is no salt in this dish because the prosciutto is salty enough.

Hint: For an extra special touch try using a hollandaise sauce for dipping the asparagus.

Serves about 6.

1 pound asparagus, trimmed and washed
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar syrup
Fresh cracked pepper
9 ounces Spanish Serrano ham or Italian prosciutto, thinly sliced

Directions: 1. In a shallow baking pan toss the asparagus with olive oil, lemon juice and pepper.

2. Cut the jamon or prosciutto slices in half and wrap each half around two spears of asparagus. (You may want to divide the spears evenly among the prosciutto pieces or cut smaller pieces.)

3. Lay these bundles seam side down on a baking sheet covered in foil.

4. Roast at 425° F for 10-15 minutes or until asparagus is done. Serve these quick and easy party appetizers warm or cold on a pretty design of balsamic syrup.

© 2010 Appetite 4 -