Crunchy, Cheesy Asparagus Sticks

Crunchy and Cheesy Asparagus Sticks (via abeautifulmess.com) Oh yes. Today we’re making some total comfort food for the season! This is a melty, cheesy, crunchy treat featuring one of my favorite vegetables from this season: asparagus. Yum! 

One thing you might be wondering is what the heck that wasabi is doing in the photo. What does wasabi have to do with cheesy asparagus? Good question. 

Crunchy and Cheesy Asparagus Sticks (via abeautifulmess.com)This appetizer idea is based on a favorite appetizer at a sushi restaurant in my hometown. To be honest, I’m not sure what fried mozzarella and asparagus have to do with sushi, but it’s SO good! So I had to try and figure out how to make my own homemade version. These do involve a little bit of prep work, but you can do everything ahead of time and then just quickly fry them (and I mean quick, like 30 seconds per asparagus stick) before serving. So these make a fantastic party appetizer that is sure to wow your friends. 

That’s also my tactful way of saying, guys, don’t make these unless you’re having a few friends over to help you eat them because they are so good that you’ll end up eating a LOT of cheese all by yourself otherwise. But if that happens, at least there won’t be any witnesses… 🙂

Fried cheesy asparagusCrunchy, Cheesy Asparagus, serves 6-8 as an appetizer.

12 string cheese sticks
12 stalks of asparagus
2 eggs
1 cup Panko bread crumbs
1/2 cup flour
oil for frying (I used a combination of peanut and vegetable because that’s what I had on hand.)

First, trim the asparagus stalks so they are about the same length as the cheese sticks, or a bit longer. Use a knife to cut a slit down the center of the string cheese, only cutting about 1/3 to 1/2 way though the stick and not quite all the way to the end. Insert the asparagus stalk. Dip the whole thing in flour, then into the whisked eggs, and last into the Panko crumbs. Set on a plate and repeat until you’ve assembled all the sticks.

You may find that some of the asparagus don’t seem to want to stay inside the string cheese perfectly. That’s OK! The egg and bread crumbs will act as a binder to hold the sticks together, so don’t worry if they don’t appear perfect.

How to deep fryOnce you have all the sticks assembled, pop them in the freezer for at least 30 minutes and up to a few hours. This will help them to stay together better once you start frying, and this means you can prep these hours before you need them. 

Heat enough oil in a large pot so the asparagus sticks will be fully submerged once you start cooking. Heat the oil to around 350°F. I like to use a candy thermometer when frying, but you can also simply test the oil by dropping in a small piece of bread and see how quickly it cooks. 

Fry each stick for 30-35 seconds, no need to flip these. Then remove to a plate lined with paper towels to remove excess oil. You can cook a few of these in the pot at once (depending on your pot size), but don’t crowd the pot as it can lower your temperature and make things stick together. I also recommend using kitchen tongs when frying as it makes it much easier to remove things from the hot oil. You want to be careful as that hot oil will really hurt if you get any on your skin. 

Crunchy and Cheesy Asparagus Sticks (via abeautifulmess.com) For a quick sauce, I combined 3/4 cup mayo, juice from one lime and a teaspoon of wasabi. You can add more or less wasabi depending on how much spice you like. Serve warm with the dipping sauce and watch them disappear. Enjoy! xo. Emma

Credits // Author and Photography: Emma Chapman. Photos edited with A Beautiful Mess actions.

Crunchy, Cheesy Asparagus

Ingredients

  • 12 string cheese sticks
  • 12 stalks of asparagus
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup Panko bread crumbs
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • oil for frying I used a combination of peanut and vegetable because that's what I had on hand.

Instructions

  • First, trim the asparagus stalks so they are about the same length as the cheese sticks, or a bit longer. Use a knife to cut a slit down the center of the string cheese, only cutting about 1/3 to 1/2 way though the stick and not quite all the way to the end. Insert the asparagus stalk. Dip the whole thing in flour, then into the whisked eggs, and last into the Panko crumbs. Set on a plate and repeat until you've assembled all the sticks.
  • You may find that some of the asparagus don't seem to want to stay inside the string cheese perfectly. That's OK! The egg and bread crumbs will act as a binder to hold the sticks together, so don't worry if they don't appear perfect.
  • Once you have all the sticks assembled, pop them in the freezer for at least 30 minutes and up to a few hours. This will help them to stay together better once you start frying, and this means you can prep these hours before you need them.
  • Heat enough oil in a large pot so the asparagus sticks will be fully submerged once you start cooking. Heat the oil to around 350°F. I like to use a candy thermometer when frying, but you can also simply test the oil by dropping in a small piece of bread and see how quickly it cooks.
  • Fry each stick for 30-35 seconds, no need to flip these. Then remove to a plate lined with paper towels to remove excess oil. You can cook a few of these in the pot at once (depending on your pot size), but don't crowd the pot as it can lower your temperature and make things stick together. I also recommend using kitchen tongs when frying as it makes it much easier to remove things from the hot oil. You want to be careful as that hot oil will really hurt if you get any on your skin.
  • These look great! The cheese sticks totally reminded me of hearts of palm and it dawned on me that this recipe may work with asparagus in hearts of palm too, for a different, tangy experience. Might have to sprinkle some cheese on top to get some cheese in there tho 🙂

  • I also lived in Springfield for a while and have had those yummy mozz/asparagus appetizers at the very restaurant you mentioned. Can’t wait to make these at home since I’ve moved!

  • Yum! Those look so good!

    Laura
    http://laurahager.blogspot.com/

  • This looks so delicious! I am a fan of anything with cheese ^_^

    Laila | Townhouse Palette

  • I started reading and thought of Kai! Now can try these at home! Thank you!

  • This looks so delicious. Definitely going to try it out soon 🙂

    tonixox.blogspot.com

  • Hi Brenda! You are more than welcome to share our posts 🙂 Thanks for reading! -Jacki

  • These look delightful and exciting! I know my taste buds are going to go wild trying them. Thanks for sharing!

    Oh, I am sorry…it just occurred to me, I shared this on my facebook page without getting your permission. I am so new to facebook and have no clue what all the rules are. Email me and let me know if I need to figure out how to remove it. Again I am sorry.

  • Vegetables wrapped in cheese is something I could easily get used to!

    Paige
    http://thehappyflammily.com

  • They do look amazing! Does the asparagus cook/soften enough in 30 seconds?

  • Woah! What a great idea! Sometimes I have a hard time getting into asparagus, but I would definitely eat these! Haha! Really creative. Yum!
    Happy Summer!
    xx Lane

  • I’ve been looking for different recipes for asparagus, this one is definitely one that I’ll be trying! Seems simple and delicious! 🙂

  • These look mouth watering! Seriously need these little guys in my life!

    http://thatsmagsforyou.com

  • I have a bunch of asparagus I need to use up, I think I’ll be trying these out! They look delicious.

  • I love asparagus! I’ve never tried it this way though, might have to give it a go 🙂

    Erika
    http://whaterikawears.com/

  • How do you think these would be if they were baked? Would like to try them but not a fan of deep fried.

    Thanks!

  • This looks SO good! I love fun asparagus recipes! So darn good!

    http://sometimesgracefully.com

  • Oh my goodness, these look and sound amazing!

    xx Kelly
    Sparkles and Shoes

  • my mouth is watering.

    asparagus is hands down my favorite thing to eat ever! so this just blows it out of the park.
    this looks so good i want to attempt to make this. and thats saying a lot considering i have a better chance of fixing my brakes correct on the first try vs cooking anything.

    cant wait!

  • What a great idea for an appetizer! I love the use of wasabi in this. I’m definitely going to make this for a party!

    Lisa
    Strum Simmer Sip

  • This looks to die for! Two of my favorite foods in one! xo

    EsraSevgi.com

  • These look fantastic! This sounds like an awesome recipe, and let me just say–you have gotten SO good at food photography. These pictures are A+.

  • Oh my goodness I have never seen anything like these before but I think I need them ASAP now that I know they exist!

  • Fun party appetizer that doubles as a sneaky way to feed my kids veggies? Thank you and yes, please!
    And what a great idea, so inventive yet simple.

  • I love, love, LOVE cheese, especially when they’re melted. I remember in middle school the cafeteria would sell cheese sticks, and everyone was always lined up at the microwaves with their plate of cheese sticks, ready to be melted, and once they were done, we’d eat it right off the plate with forks! Sticking an asparagus in there would make me feel a little healthier about that hehe (even though I still know it’s still every bit as indulgent, but oh well) -Audrey | Brunch at Audrey’s

  • I am also a member of that club. The cheese sticks and asparagus loving club, that is. 🙂

    -Emma

  • Being a huge fan of cheese sticks and also a fan of asparagus, these look absolutely delicious! I would have never thought of pairing them together. Thanks for sharing Emma!

    xoxo from Miami, FL – Jessy

    www.letsfallinloveblog.com

  • These look delicious and dangerous. I’ve just recently fallen in love with asparagus and I can not get enough of it. This looks like a really great way to change it up.

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