Shaved asparagus salad

Hello again.

If you haven't noticed, I've taken a bit of a hiatus from blogging lately. This was unplanned, but it's been a busy few months and time sort of got away from me. I studied like crazy for the CSSD exam, which I took on July 20th, I've been working on planning a Europe vacation with my husband, and I came down with strep throat for the first time in my life (a terrible thing!). Between all of this madness + work madness, I've been trying to get as much rest as I can. I've been feeling pretty run down lately and I'm longing for September 3rd, when Mike and I leave for Scandinavia. Things might remain quiet around here for awhile, but I hope to come back with killer fjord photos and stories of smörgåsbords to share.
Until then, here's a beautiful and tasty recipe for a shaved asparagus salad, perfect for a summer picnic. I'm a little late in getting this out - I originally created this recipe when asparagus was in season at my local farmer's market, but it would still be delicious with late-season asparagus. It's lemony and super fresh-tasting with just the right amount of salty, cheesy punch. It takes a bit of patience to shred the asparagus with a vegetable peeler, but it seems to be the best way. My mandoline is usually stellar but didn't do a great job with this task. The time is worth it, though.
I don't use toasted hazelnuts nearly enough.
Shaved asparagus salad
Serves 4 as a side or 2 as a main dish

1 bunch asparagus (1/2 pound)
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon lemon zest
1 1/2 teaspoon olive oil
1/2 a shallot, finely diced
1 teaspoon champagne vinegar
Salt and pepper, to taste
1 ounce pecorino cheese, shaved
1/4 cup toasted hazelnuts
  1. Use a vegetable peeler to shave the asparagus into thin ribbons, starting from the stem end and working toward the tip. Place all of the shavings into a serving bowl.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the lemon juice, lemon zest, olive oil, shallot, vinegar, salt, and pepper.  Pour the dressing mixture over the asparagus shavings and toss to combine. 
  3. Top the dressed asparagus with shaved pecorino and toasted hazelnuts and serve.

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