Whether green or white, the Swiss really love their asparagus. In particular though, it seems that white asparagus is especially sought after in the spring. This time of year, signs start popping up in restaurant windows about the arrival of asparagus. This year, I even saw an article in my local newspaper announcing the opening of the Swiss asparagus season. Overall, the average Swiss consumes about 1.3 kilograms of this vegetable during the year.
With all this excitement over Swiss asparagus, I decided to take a train to Kerzers in the canton of Fribourg to see the fields of white asparagus for myself. To find these fields, I walked part of the Sentier maraîcher (Vegetable path), which offers two routes: 25 kilometers (about 15 miles) and 45 kilometers (25 miles). Kerzers is a small village, and it only took me about 20 minutes of walking to reach the fields.
Unlike green asparagus, which has exposure to sunshine so photosynthesis can take place, white asparagus is grown underground in order to preserve its bleached white color. It takes a lot of extra effort to this do, which explains the higher price per kilogram for white asparagus. I saw prices ranging from CHF 10 to 16 — depending on the quality of the stalks.
At home, I typically make white asparagus soup, or velouté d’asperges, for my children. I’ve also tried serving boiled white asparagus in butter and topped with toasted bread crumbs, herbs and crisp prosciutto.
What are your favorite ways to prepare asparagus? Do you prefer green or white? Please share your comments and recipes below or send me an email. Many thanks!
Updated: December 29, 2022
Categories: Culinary events, Culinary travel, Lunch/dinner, Swiss, Swiss food, Switzerland, Vegetables
I prefer green but maybe because you only get white in jars in the uk (as far as I’ve seen) – have you tried asparagus carbonara? It’s very good! Or I love it in balsamic dressed potato salad, or best of all on the bbq/grill pan x
Hi Lucy! I didn’t really know about white asparagus until we moved to Switzerland. I haven’t tried asparagus carbonara. My kids might like that!? Thanks for the suggestion! I like roasting the green stuff and tossing it with balsamic vinegar, soy sauce and melted butter!
oh yes asparagus and balsamic are a marriage made in heaven
I love asparagus! Such a shame I’ll miss those festivals when I am in Switzerland in the end of May. 😞
Have a wonderful trip to Switzerland! Even if you’re missing the festivals, I’m sure you’ll still be able to find some good local asparagus. 🙂 Thanks for visiting my blog. Best wishes, and safe travels.