Asparagus season has started and it’s time to have some fun. Here in Portland asparagus is found in expected and unexpected places, though thankfully no desserts. Yet.
But before proceeding the question of “what the hell is up with my pee when I eat asparagus?” is answered.
The smell comes from the way certain chemical compounds break down inside people’s bodies. Namely s-methyl thioesters: s-methyl thioacrylate and s-methyl thiopropionate. Thioesters, like methanethiol, are primarily sulfur based except being formed from sulfur bonding with an acyl group.This is why cooking asparagus in various ways does not result in the same smelly byproduct as obviously the specific digestive enzymes that break down the compounds in the asparagus to produce the smell aren’t present. It seems that it happens to everyone but not everyone can smell it.
Anyway, roast asparagus at 450 with some olive oil and coarse salt until a bit charred looking.
Eat it like that or blend it with sauteed onions, chicken stock, some fresh dill and salt and pepper. Sprinkle with Parmesan.
Or, do a quick stir fry with sesame oil and sesame seeds and at the last minute add some scallions.
Or, roll some Dover Sole around some skinny stalks and bake till the fish is done, with some salt and pepper and chopped garlic on top.