Updated: Jan 9
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It's officially spring! This time of year, is when light quick meals such as an easy salad are more suited to our taste, aren't they? Salads are great not only for lunches but for dinner as well. I love all sorts of salads, and I'm always ready to try something new. In my opinion, a raw shaved asparagus salad provides an interesting twist and is the best way to eat this spring vegetable. When this season arrives, it is the perfect time to enjoy the sweetness and crispiness of asparagus. This salad was new to my husband, no surprise here since he doesn't eat many veggies. However, he is no stranger to asparagus.
This elegant salad is perfect as a standalone meal enjoyed with a slice of sourdough bread, or topped with grilled fish, shrimp, chicken, pork chop, or any other protein of your choice. The asparagus shaved into thin ribbons is a beautiful and delicious way to enjoy this spring veggie.
Bacon of course makes everything taste better, am I right? In this recipe I included bacon to make sure my big boy will get excited to eat this new salad. But if you are vegetarian, it is totally fine to skip the bacon. Good quality parmesan cheese and sun-dried tomatoes provide beautiful umami flavor and protein to the dish.
By the way did you know sun-dried tomatoes are high in protein?
Sun-dried tomatoes correspond to 25% of the protein RDA. For a typical serving size of 1 cup (or 54 g) the amount of Protein is 7.62 g. This corresponds to an RDA percentage of 14%. The percentage of the recommended daily allowance (RDA) for protein is based on a 50 g RDA level for a mature adult.
What about the main ingredient?
My love for asparagus began shortly after I arrived in the USA. My husband actually cooked some on the grill. Today, you can find asparagus in UA supermarkets. It wasn't until I came to the South and started gardening that I began to really learn about this unique vegetable. It was then that I realized the huge bush in my grandmother's garden in the UA was an edible plant! My grandmother used the funny looking greens as part of her flower bouquets. This memory causes me to giggle, and I wished I had known back then that it was a delicious edible veggie.
What are the benefits of eating asparagus?
Asparagus is a nutrient-dense food that is high in folate acid, potassium, fiber, vitamin B6, vitamin A, vitamin C, and thiamine. They are packed with anti-inflammatory properties, antioxidants and have been used as a medicine throughout human history.
Asparagus has so many nutritional benefits which assist with the heart, digestion, bones and even cells. According to a new study this vegetable should be a part of our diet to reduce the risk of breast cancer.
This salad is good to eat right away but allow it to marinate for a few hours so all the flavors will blend together. It is even more flavorful the next day and can be turned into a quick stir fry for your next meal.
The fantastic versatile dressing can be used on pretty much any salad you wish and is also great on steamed veggies.
Let's do it...
Prep time: 5 minutes
Making time: 10 minutes
Total time: 15 minutes
Author: Inna of Innichkachef.com
Servings: 2 salads as a meal or 4 salads as a side dish
Ingredients for the salad
2 bunches of asparagus
2 oz. of parmesan cheese
1/3 cup of parsley, chopped
3 strips of cooked bacon
Ingredients for the dressing
1 small shallot, minced
1/3 cup of olive oil
1 Tablespoon of raw local honey
2 Tablespoons of sun-dried tomatoes (packed in olive oil)
juice from one small lemon
2. Add the parsley, and shave the parmesan into the same bowl (save a little bit for the garnish).
3. Chop two strips of bacon and add to the bowl. Mix all together.
4. For the dressing, in another bowl add the minced shallot. Then chop the sun- dried tomatoes very fine almost to their base (include any remaining tomato juice/oil) and add to the bowl. Season with salt and black pepper.
5. Now add lemon juice, vinegar, honey and whisk, while you are whisking drizzle in the olive oil.
6. Add dressing to the asparagus mixture until it is fully incorporated.
7. Plate the salad on a platter or divide between two plates.
Chop reserved piece of bacon and sprinkle on top. Use a lemon zester to grate reserved parmesan cheese, and sprinkle on the salad.