Shaved Asparagus Salad with Oranges and Pecorino

A quintessential spring salad, this dish is refreshing and filling.

Slideshow: More Spring Salad Recipes
  • Total Time:
  • Servings: 6

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  • 1 large bunch of thick asparagus (2 pounds), trimmed
  • One 1 1/2-ounce piece of Pecorino Romano cheese
  • 3 tablespoons fresh orange juice
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons snipped chives
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons Champagne vinegar or white wine vinegar
  • 1/4 teaspoon finely grated orange zest
  • 1/4 cup hazelnut oil
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons grapeseed oil
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1 navel orange
  • 2 tablespoons toasted hazelnuts, coarsely chopped (optional)

How to make this recipe

  1. Using a mandoline set over a large bowl (or a sturdy vegetable peeler), shave the asparagus lengthwise. Shave the Pecorino Romano cheese into the bowl.

  2. In a blender, combine the orange juice, chives, vinegar and orange zest and process until smooth. With the machine on, add the hazelnut and grapeseed oils in a thin stream and process until emulsified; season with salt and pepper. Add the dressing to the asparagus and let stand for about 5 minutes, until the asparagus is slightly wilted.

  3. Using a sharp knife, peel the orange, removing all of the bitter white pith. Working over a small bowl, cut in between the membranes to release the sections. Add the orange sections to the asparagus. Mound the salad on a large platter, garnish with the hazelnuts and serve.

Suggested Pairing

A light, fruity, nonvintage sparkling wine will highlight the salty cheese and blend with the citrusy dressing in this salad. Look for one from Italy or Washington State.

Contributed By Photo © William Meppem Published August 2003

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