I love when the first spears of local asparagus appear in the markets. It is one of my favourite vegetables and I like to make the most of it when it is available. When there is asparagus, summer has truly begun!
The traditional way for my family to eat asparagus is to serve it boiled, on toast, topped with a cheddar cheese sauce. My husband’s family does something similar but covers theirs with cream of asparagus soup and they serve it with hard-boiled eggs on top. Once my dad cooked some asparagus for me and tossed it with lemon juice, olive oil, garlic and toasted almonds – it was years ago and I still remember how good it tasted.
Last week when hubby brought some nice thin spears home for me I decided I wanted to try something different and grill it on the barbecue. Combined with some fresh greens, spring onions and strawberries from the garden, a little feta cheese and topped with an easy balsamic vinaigrette it made a yummy grilled asparagus salad.
To make one of these salads for yourself, you will need:
- a bunch or two of asparagus (depending on how many people you are feeding)
- oil for grilling
- fresh salad greens (I mixed spinach, lettuce and arugula)
- strawberries, hulled and sliced in half
- green onions, chopped
- balsamic vinegar
- feta cheese
- extra-virgin olive oil
- salt and pepper
Toss the asparagus in a little oil and lay on a hot grill for about 5 minutes or until tender. While the asparagus is cooking lay the salad greens on your plates. Arrange the cooked asparagus on top of the greens. Sprinkle with strawberries, onions and crumbled feta. Combine equal parts of vinegar and olive oil and drizzle over the salad. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Summer on a plate!