With the recent arrival of the PSU farmers market on Saturdays, many will be taking home green stalks of asparagus to roast away in the oven, as I do every spring.
With the recent arrival of the PSU farmers market on Saturdays, many will be taking home green stalks of asparagus to roast away in the oven, as I do every spring. However, why not update the classic dish?
Shaving asparagus changes the texture to thin whispers of freshness that look beautiful in the bowl. To shave them, simply hold each asparagus by its woody end and use a vegetable peeler to shave strands away from your body. The textures will vary, but shoot for thicker stalks in this recipe since they give the opportunity for more salad. As for the fennel in this recipe, you can use a vegetable peeler as well—though you’d want to shave towards your body instead—or simply slice thinly with a knife or mandoline. This salad is a great light lunch or one can serve it under scallops or chicken breast for a pretty spring dinner.
- 2 tablespoons of walnuts
- 1/2 bundle of asparagus
- 1/4 of a bulb of fennel
- 2 tablespoons of mixed minced herbs (chives, parsley
- and mint are a nice combination)
- 1 teaspoon fennel fronds
- 2 tablespoons of olive oil
- Freshly ground pepper
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Place walnuts on a baking sheet and let them toast while you prepare the other ingredients.
Shave the asparagus stalks and add to a bowl. Thinly slice or shave the fennel and add to the same bowl.
In a small cup or bowl, add the herbs and fennel fronds. Slowly drizzle in the olive oil, whisking with a fork until the mixture is well combined. Season the dressing with salt and pepper.
Remove the walnuts from the oven after 6–8 minutes, or when warm and slightly toasted.
Add the walnuts to the salad and toss in the dressing with tongs. Serves 1–2 people. ?