This dish is perfect year round, but I do love the fresh young asparagus of spring. Asparagus is so good for you. This veggie is packed full of vitamins including vitamin A, C, E, K, and B6. If that isn’t enough for you, how about the fact that asparagus can help you lose weight? Low in calories but high in insoluble fiber, which will help you feel full longer. Prosciutto is defined as thinly sliced, cured, Italian ham. This delicious meat is salty, very flavorful, and used on a variety of different dishes. Prosciutto wrapped asparagus is an easy yet elegant addition to a meal or party. For a hot or cold appetizer or a dazzling side dish this spring, let’s make prosciutto wrapped asparagus!
This dish will dress up any meal from shrimp to chicken to steak. It works well with nearly everything. I’m using Neufchâtel cheese with the prosciutto. If you cannot find it in your local store, American cream cheese and Neufchâtel can be used interchangeably. Both are dense, tangy and spreadable. The biggest difference between the two: the Neufchâtel is made using milk exclusively (23% milk fat), and, cream cheese is made with milk and cream (33% milk fat). Neufchâtel has a great taste and less fat. Win-Win. You may choose to add fresh herbs to the cheese or buy chive and onion-flavored cream cheese.
I freeze the prosciutto for a few minutes which makes it easier to spread the cheese on the thin slices. Wrap the blanched asparagus in groups of 3 and brush the ends of the spears with olive oil. Bake and serve. Elegant, & good either warm or chilled, you’ll use this dish over and over. To serve it cold, refrigerate after it is baked.
Prosciutto Wrapped Asparagus
Use organic when available
- 4 oz. Neufchâtel cheese (1/2 8 oz package) or cream cheese
- 1/2 pound thinly sliced prosciutto
- 12 spears fresh asparagus, trimmed
- Olive oil
- Ice cubes in cold water
- optional add herbs to cheese or use chive and onion-flavored cream cheese
- Put the prosciutto in the freezer for about 10 minutes
- Preheat oven to 450 degrees F
- Blanch the asparagus for 1 to 2 minutes in boiling water
- Remove from pot and plunge into an ice water bath
- Drain and blot dry
- Remove prosciutto from freezer
- Spread the cheese on the thin slices of prosciutto
- Wrap prosciutto around a bunch of 3 or 4 asparagus
- Start with the small end of slice and wrap ending with large end of prosciutto
- Brush olive oil on ends of spears
- Spray baking sheet
- Place bundles on baking sheet in a single layer
- Bake for about 7 minutes until asparagus is tender
- Serve warm or chilled
- Optional: refrigerate if serving chilled
- Optional: Drizzle with a balsamic glaze
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