From April to May, the Terlan Margarete asparagus is at the center of South Tyrolean culinary attention. Harvested in the fields around Terlan, Vilpian and Siebeneich, and prepared in local restaurants, the Margarete asparagus could not be grown any closer to the restaurants it is served in.
The Terlan asparagus hosts are true experts in preparing the Margarete asparagus. Founded in 1983, by 8 Terlan restaurants, local asparagus farmers and Terlan winery, Cantina Terlano, each spring, the Terlan asparagus hosts deliver culinary highlights centered around the versatile and delicious vegetable. This year‘s asparagus season ends on 16th May 2021.
The Terlan Margarete asparagus is traditionally served with the characteristic Bozner Sauce. Another South Tyrolean spring classic is fawn with asparagus and potato puree. Whether it is in risotto-, soup, pasta-, egg-, fish- or meat dishes, the Margarete asparagus and its typical intensive, nutty flavor is incredibly versatile. Accompanying the asparagus: wine from the Cantina Terlano, the so called „asparagus wine“, made from sauvignon blanc, is a light white wine with a flowery aroma that is bottled specifically for the asparagus season and harmonizes perfectly with Margarete asparagus.
For all those that prefer sweet over savory, asparagus even pairs well with strawberries.
Creativity knows no bounds in Terlan. Each asparagus host offers different specialties. This year five of them offer takeaway on their dishes, until restaurants will open again.
More information on the asparagus season, current events and recipes can be found under: www.terlaner-spargelzeit.it
© pict Marion Lafogler
© Michele Mondini
Legend in Terlan has it that some years ago, in the after war period, a young farmer forgot to turn off his sprinkler system overnight. In the morning all of his apple trees were covered in ice, much to the amusement of his fellow farmers. But the laughter soon ceased, as they themselves discovered that all the blooming flower buds on their trees were destroyed by the freezing temperatures, while only those of the young farmer remained, safely trapped under a thin layer of ice that was now starting to melt in the morning sun.
Such stories are quite common in the area, as the importance of frost protection irrigation became more and more apparent with the increasing amount of apple cultivation. Blooming apple flower buds are very delicate and sensitive to the cold. And without flower buds in spring, there won‘t be any apples later in the year. Which is why at first sign of frost during the night, apple farmers turn on their sprinkler systems.
The ice on the trees might be spectacular to look at, but it isn‘t the ice itself that‘s actually keeping the flower buds safe from the freezing temperatures. Tiny water droplets in the air from the sprinklers fall onto the blooming flowers and begin to crystallize, releasing heat and thus protecting the flower buds.
The farmer's trees from the story were ready for harvest in autumn, hopefully, so will be our neighbor's!
Not even two weeks ago, we recommended our guests to enjoy their Sunday brunch on our terrace.
In the meantime snow has fallen, and not just a little bit, we haven't seen this much snow in years!
So outdoor activities unfortunately fall flat for those of us who prefer to stay dry.
Inside, the concierge tries to make himself useful.
He finds what he was looking for inside our cold storage rooms. Lemons, oranges and bergamots are just waiting to be processed. Nothing easier than that!
What was our recipe for jam again…?
And lo and behold, some time later, fresh jam is ready and waiting to be filled into jars and due to be enjoyed by our guests.
Still not satisfied the concierge continues on his quest through the cold storage rooms… what do we have here? Ah, cookie dough gifted to us by Chef Michele. More precisely “Julkakor” dough.
The original recipe, however, comes from another chef with whom Chef Michele and the concierge have worked. Chef Erik, former Executive Chef of the Swedish American Line cruise ship M/S Gripsholm. It was with Erik that the concierge completed his apprenticeship while Michele cooked under Erik as Chef de Cuisine.
Every year at Christmas time Erik baked cookies. This tradition was picked up by Michele, who kindly shared his dough with us.
And so the concierge set about baking. He might not be as naturally gifted as Erik or Michele, but the outcome is still something to be proud of.
In the late afternoon our neighbor came by and helped us clear the parking lot of about 35 cm of snow. As much as the concierge was looking for something to do that day, he preferred to leave the hard work to the professionals…
As a thank you, our neighbor received freshly baked cookies. Maybe they’ll bring us all some luck.
For now, let’s just hope there won’t be too much more snow.
… the snow has melted, the weather is perfect again. How about an enjoyable light Sunday brunch at the Sparerhof, featuring local wine from Terlano, farmer's butter, anchovies and our homemade bread.