Newsday’s Erica Marcus for Feed Me

Luce & Hawkins and asparagus and springtime

Monday April 23, 2012 5:55 PM   By Erica Marcus

This weekend marked my first 2012 visit to the North Fork and, as luck would have it, the asparagus harvest had just begun. I spied a couple of bunches at Goodale Farms in Aquebogue and snapped them up on the way to lunch at Luce & Hawkins in Jamesport — where chef-owner Keith Luce had, apparently, been similarly inspired.

Luce billed his starter as “asparagus quiche,” but it was really a custard shot through and topped with asparagus. A garnish of puff-pastry crescents added a quiche-y note, a little mound of smoked salmon caviar recapitulated the egg theme.

And what eggs. They’re from Luce’s own chickens and they lent the custard a deep, marigold hue and startlingly rich texture. Here was a big serving of spring in a ramekin.

The rest of lunch was terrific: Luce’s signature NoFo duck wings, a salad of field greens and seared scallops, a juicy burger with hot, crisp French fries. I was too full to eat dinner.

At home the next morning, however, I cooked half the asparagus and served them with scrambled eggs. For dinner, I used the rest of the asparagus (plus penne and lots of Parmesan) to make a sort of carbonara with asparagus instead of pancetta. Happy spring.

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