600 grams asparagus
1 fat stalk of lemongrass
100 grams butter
1 clove garlic, finely sliced
1 long red chilli, seeds removed, finely chopped
1 tablespoon lime juice
1 tablespoon shredded basil or mint
Cut off the bulb end (white part) of the lemongrass (about 6 cm) and discard the tough leaves. Wash and finely chop the lemongrass bulb and place with the butter in a small saucepan. Melt the butter and cook gently for 3 minutes without browning. Set aside for at least 2 hours to infuse the flavours. If possible, leave overnight to get a good infusion of flavour. Refrigerate until ready to use.
Snap the tough ends off the asparagus and discard. Cook the spears in boiling, well salted water (about 2.5 cm deep in a shallow pan) until al dente. Drain well.
To serve: Reheat the butter and strain into a bowl. Discard the lemongrass. Stir in the garlic, chilli and lime juice. Season. Toss the asparagus with the butter and pile up on a serving platter. Scatter with basil or mint.