- 20 thin or 12 fat asparagus spears, tough ends removed
- Extra virgin olive oil, for brushing
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 1 cup chopped hazelnuts
- 1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
- 1/2 lemon
- 3 cups water
- 1 tablespoon vinegar
- 4 fresh large eggs
- Pinch of snipped chives, for garnish
Preheat oven to 425° F.
Place asparagus spears in a small baking pan. Brush with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast asparagus for 4 to 5 minutes, or until just crisp-tender. They will continue to cook a bit after you remove them from the oven.
In a small sauté pan, melt butter over medium heat until it sizzles. Add hazelnuts and thyme and cook, stirring frequently, until hazelnuts are a deep golden brown. Season with salt and pepper and squeeze as much of the lemon into the pan as you desire.
In a small saucepan, bring water to a bare simmer and add vinegar. Break eggs, one by one, into a small bowl and then gently slide them into the simmering water. Cook for 4 to 6 minutes, depending on your preference for doneness. Using a slotted spoon, remove eggs from the water and allow to drain for a moment on paper towels.
Arrange 5 small or 3 fat asparagus spears on each of 4 plates. Season each egg with salt, pepper and chives and place 1 egg on top of each bundle of asparagus. Scatter hazelnuts over the top and serve immediately.