The asparagus of Lombardy is more phallic in appearance and pulpier than that found anywhere else. It has a deep purple tinge which singles it out from other types. This dish makes a wonderfully simple lunch. The eggs can be omitted if you wish, or poached instead of fried.
Tie the asparagus into bundles with cook’s string, put it into a deep saucepan with the tips pointing upwards and pour in enough water to come three quarters of the way up the stems. Add a pinch of salt, place the lid on the saucepan, bring to the boil and simmer for 9 minutes or until the asparagus is tender.
Meanwhile, melt the butter in a frying-pan until foaming. Break the eggs care