2. Fill a 12-inch skillet two-thirds full of water and add about 1 tablespoon salt. Bring to a simmer. Drop in the asparagus and cook 1-2 minutes. After 1 minute, test stalks with a knife - you want them to have some resistance, to be slightly crisp. Drain the asparagus immediately in a colander. Rinse with cold running water to cool.
3. Lay out asparagus on a platter. Drizzle with olive oil, herbs, salt, and pepper. Roll gently to coat. Serve at room temperature.
Recipe by Lynne Rossetto Kasper. Copyright © 2012. From the An Early Summer Picnic menu.
Andrea Reusing is the creator of the restaurant Lantern in Chapel Hill, N.C., and author of the book Cooking in the Moment: A Year of Seasonal Recipes. In this installment of The Key 3, she shares with Lynne Rossetto Kasper the techniques behind three of her favorite recipes: Turnip Soup, Overnight Braised Short Ribs and Tomato Salad.