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Asparagus, Fava Beans, Chervil & Morel Mushrooms
By Chef Alfred Portale

Asparagus, Fava Beans, Chervil & Morel Mushrooms

1 tablespoon Canola Oil
1 pound Morel Mushrooms (or 1 cup Dried Morels reconstituted)
Salt and Freshly Ground White Pepper to taste
1 Shallots peeled and finely minced
1/2 clove Organic Garlic peeled and finely minced
1 2/3 cup Vegetable Stock
1 1/2 pounds Fava Beans
2 3/4 cups Asparagus peeled and ends trimmed (24 - 36 spears)
2 tablespoons Unsalted Butter
2 tablespoons Chives finely minced
12 sprigs Chervil

In a large sauté pan, heat the oil over medium heat.

Add the morels, season them with salt and pepper, and cook, stirring occasionally, for 4-5 minutes, until softened. Add the shallot and cook, stirring, for about 4 minutes, or until softened. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, for about 3 minutes longer. Add the stock, raise the heat, and when the stock comes to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer for about 5 minutes.

Remove from the heat and set aside, covered, to keep warm.

Bring a saucepan of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the fava beans and cook for one minute. Drain and rinse under cold water. Remove the thick peel from each bean and set aside.

In a large pot, bring salted water to a boil over medium-high heat and cook the asparagus spears for 4-5 minutes, until tender when pierced with the tip of a sharp knife.

You may have to cook the asparagus in batches. Drain them on a clean kitchen towel. Arrange the asparagus in the center of a serving platter or on individual serving plates. Using a slotted spoon, distribute the mushrooms evenly over the asparagus.

Reheat the sauce over high heat until boiling. Taste it for seasoning and, if necessary, cook it a little longer to reduce slightly and intensify the flavors. Remove it from the heat and swirl in the butter to enrich the sauce. Add the fava beans and the chives and spoon the sauce over and around the asparagus.

Garnish with the chervil and serve.