Lobster-and-Asparagus Salad with Miso-Mustard Vinaigrette
For 20 years, I've made a hot miso sauce by beating egg yolks, miso, sugar, dashi (Japanese soup stock), soy and a few secret ingredients in a double boiler. It's my go-to sauce for grilled meats and fish--I love the salty umami elegance of it, the silken mouthfeel. Best of all (and rare for a sauce that is thickened with egg yolk), it reheats without curdling or becoming any less delightful. Magic!
But why it took me so long to figure out a cool miso vinaigrette is beyond me. Now I serve the miso vinaigrette with my lobster-and-asparagus salad, inspired by the salad I had at the Four Seasons in Manhattan when I was in high school. My dad took me there for a special father-son disciplinary chat, the choice of venue meant to intimidate me. But I was too blissed out to care because the food was spectacular: casual but refined, so different than anything I'd ever had. I think of that whenever I make this recipe. Try my miso vinaigrette with and without the mustard; it works both ways.--Andrew Zimmern