Peel the asparagus, wash it, and cut off any stalks that are too long. Tie up in bundles with Holland string.* Boil in salted water until tender. Lay out on a fine sieve and remove the strings. When the water has drained off, transfer to a platter lined with a napkin, arrange with the tips to the middle, and cover with a napkin to keep warm.
Serve sabayon sauce separately.
*Since Holland cloth was any sturdy linen or cotton cloth, Holland string was presumably any plain, sturdy linen or cotton cord. The advice here was to avoid hemp, the ordinary Russian cord, which would have imparted an off taste to delicate foods like asparagus.
© 1992 All rights reserved. Published by Indiana University Press.