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by on May 28th, 2011

Asparagus and Mushroom Salad

Fresh asparagus and mushrooms make a great salad.


Anyone who lives in the north and has dealt with inches or I should say FEET of snow this past winter is excited to see the crocus pop up in the Spring. I remember when we lived in Iowa and had 120 days of snow cover and spotting our first crocus popping up through the snow and I knew that Spring was just around the corner. Now summer is here and I’m looking for more salad recipes to try with our great bar-b-q that my husband will be doing all summer long. This would be a great additional to your Memorial Day celebration. Happy Memorial Day to everyone!

Asparagus is one of those Spring vegetables that I can hardly wait for because I know the price will get much lower than what I have to pay in the winter months. The day I made this recipe I paid $1.77/lb. So, I have quite a few asparagus recipes I’m going to be posting.

Most people tend to think that only the tiny thin asparagus is tender but that’s not true. I have bought asparagus as thick has my finger and it has been just as tender as the thinner variety.  You will also see white asparagus and when we were at a farmer’s market in Chicago last spring, we bought some purple asparagus which was beautiful and wonderful. Now that would make a pretty salad, purple, green and white asparagus. That is, if you could find all three varieties at the same time.

Isn’t this beautiful purple asparagus? We picked this up at a farmer’s market in Chicago.

Grilled asparagus makes an appearance at many of our “grilled” meals because I can simply give it to my husband and he can throw it on the grill.  He hasn’t perfected his grilling of asparagus and corn yet, seems like it gets a little to brown/black for my taste. I can’t complained too loudly because he makes the very best of all kinds of bar-b-q. He has perfected that skill quite well. So, this year, I’m going to give him a few lessons on grilling vegetables.

Besides grilling asparagus I have steamed it, broiled it, wrapped it in proscuitto for a cold appetizer. I have wrapped it in proscuitto then phyllo and baked it for an appetizer with a lemon dipping sauce. I use to make this Swiss Asparagus Casserole that called for “canned” asparagus.  I know, I know, who would eat canned asparagus when you can have fresh. But that casserole is really good and one day I will try it with the fresh asparagus. I love making asparagus finger sandwiches for teas I have catered.

I love boiled eggs in salads and when I came across this recipe years ago, I drooled at the thought of asparagus and boiled eggs together, and it’s great having another salad recipe to add to my repertoire.

Blanch the chopped asparagus a few minutes to bring out the bright green color

I think the best dressings are simple and nothing more than olive oil and lemon juice.

Asparagus and Mushroom Salad

2 lbs. asparagus
2 Tbsp. olive oil
1/2 c. white onion, thinly sliced
1 clove garlic, crushed
1/2 lb. mushrooms, sliced
2 Tbsp. fresh shaved Parmesan cheese
3 hard boiled eggs, coarsely grated
Dressing:
1/3 c. olive oil
juice of 1 lemon
salt and pepper

Break off the tough woody ends of the asparagus and discard. Cut the asparagus into 1 1/2 pieces on an angle. Bring water to boil and add pinch of salt and 1 tablespoon of the olive oil.  Blanch the asparagus a couple of minutes until barely tender. Drain and rinse. Place in a bowl with the onions.

Heat a frying pan and add the remaining 1 tablespoon of oil, the garlic, and the mushrooms. Saute 2-3 minutes until just tender, allow to cool,and add to the asparagus and onion. Add the cheese and the grated egg.

Combine the ingredients for the dressing and add to the bowl. Toss together and serve.

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