Sometimes a recipe isn't so much a set of ingredients with instructions as it is just a really good idea. Grilled asparagus falls into this category. I've seen it in many cookbooks and on various sites (the Epicurious site, for example, has several variations) and after reading all the rave reviews decided this week to give it a try myself. In fact, I consulted the "recipe" in the Nigel Slater book (I think it was Real Good Food, imaginitive title, Nigel) which consisted of the following instructions: wash and trim the spears and brush them with olive oil. Put them on the grill. Turn them as they cook. Remove from grill when done and sprinkle with freshly grated parmesan. And the result? Absolutely delicious. Our grill isn't especially even in its heating and so it took some manipulation to get them all cooked without having raw or burned bits, but in the end it was so worth the effort. They remain crunchy and have so much more flavour than steamed asparagus. The charred bits add to the general charm and I love the way just the right amount of parmesan sticks to their glistening bodies. I thought I would never find a better way to serve asparagus than steamed with a good hollandaise sauce, but I was wrong. God help me, I may have to reconsider my artichokes-must-be-steamed-and-served-with-lemon-butter rule!