NEW JERSEY — Spring is here, and that means tender spears of asparagus are on the table.

Whether your stalks are thick or thin, it’s the method that you use to cook this vegetable that affects the way it tastes. Steam it in the microwave or on the stove and you’ll get a “green,” grassy flavor. Grill or roast it and you’ll get a more nutty, sweet flavor.

Next time you’ve got a bunch, try some of these ideas for a delicious spring dish:

Sign Up for NJ Flavor Newsletter
Our newsletter delivers the local news that you can trust.

1. A bit of grated lemon zest after cooking will add color and compliment your veggie’s flavor.

2. Up the umami factor of roasted asparagus by sprinkling it with parmesan cheese.

3. Get fancy! Try sprinkling roasted or grilled asparagus with truffle salt.

4. Sauté chopped asparagus in a little olive oil with salt and pepper to toss with spaghetti.

5. Wrap each stalk in a little prosciutto before roasting with olive oil for a savory appetizer.

6. Look out, zucchini sticks. Asparagus is also delicious battered and fried.

7. Making pizza? Chop up some raw asparagus to use as a fresh new topping.

8. Stir chopped cooked asparagus into pasta salad.

9. Use leftover cooked asparagus the next day in a frittata or omelet for brunch.

10. Serve it chilled: Quickly steam your asparagus until just tender, drain, then dunk it in a bowl of ice water until chilly. This will keep your stalks from getting mushy and help them retain their bright green color.

Did you know? Asparagus is white when it was grown without sunlight. White asparagus has a more delicate flavor than green.

More on NJ Flavor:

The History of Corned Beef and Cabbage for St. Patrick’s Day

Hey, New Jersey: Now’s Your Chance to Eat a Chocolate Fudge-Covered Corn Dog

New Jersey Date Night: Indulge in Amazing Cheesecake

To sign up to have NJ Flavor and other great TAPinto.net sections sent straight to your inbox, click here. Follow NJ Flavor on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Are you a business interested in reaching our audience? Contact Jackie Lieberman at jlieberman@tapinto.net.