If you have never roasted (or grilled) asparagus before, you are in for a treat! This is the only way I prepare it now.
Roasting at the different temperatures will produce different flavor factors–high temperature or grilling will give you smoky, caramelized asparagus, while a lower temperature allows the asparagus flavor to come through.
1 bunch asparagus, woody bottoms snapped off
extra-virgin olive oil
salt and pepper, to taste
1/4 cup capers in brine, drained, optional
1. Heat oven to 350 degrees, 425 degrees or 500 degrees; or prepare the grill.
2. Put prepared asparagus on a rimmed baking sheet. Drizzle olive oil over to coat. Sprinkle lightly with salt. If using capers, add to pan. Toss to coat evenly. If you’re using a grill pan for the BBQ, and you’re going with the capers, you may want to line the grill pan with foil, so the capers don’t fall through the holes.
3. Roast the asparagus for about 15 minutes at 350, about 10 at 425 and about 7 minutes at 500. For grilling, about 10 minutes. You may want to shake the pan so the asparagus won’t stick, but if you’ve used enough olive oil, you shouldn’t have to.
5. Transfer the asparagus to a platter. Pour the capers and any oil over the asparagus and season with pepper, if desired.