"David Bouley has known me for five years, but I've known him for over 13. In 1990, for my master's thesis for journalism school, I donned chef's whites and sneaked into the kitchen at New York City's Bouley, hoping to get a firsthand glimpse of a star chef throwing tantrums. But David was all quiet concentration. He was much more talkative when we wrote his cookbook, East of Paris—amazingly so. A question about asparagus would lead to tangential stories about his childhood, his travels and his motorcycle camping trip through the desert with Lyle Lovett. He may have even cooked asparagus out there—with David, it's hard to tell," says Melissa Clark.
Plus: More Vegetable Recipes and Tips
2 pounds thin asparagus
1 pound medium Yukon Gold potatoes, scrubbed but not peeled
1 teaspoon coriander seeds, crushed
1/4 cup tarragon leaves
1/4 cup flat-leaf parsley leaves
2 tablespoons snipped chives
1/4 cup Riesling or other off-dry white wine
1 1/2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
Salt and freshly ground pepper
How to Make It
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Fill a bowl with ice water. Add the asparagus to the boiling water and cook until crisp-tender, 2 to 3 minutes. Using tongs, transfer the asparagus to the ice water to cool. Drain and pat dry.
Add the potatoes to the boiling water and cook over moderate heat until tender, about 30 minutes. Drain and let cool slightly.
Meanwhile, in a mini food processor, pulse the coriander seeds until coarsely ground. Add the tarragon, parsley and chives and process until finely chopped. Add the Riesling, vinegar and mustard and process until smooth. With the machine on, add the olive oil in a steady stream and process until emulsified. Season with salt and pepper.
Peel and thickly slice the potatoes and transfer them to a bowl. Add 1/4 cup of the dressing, season with salt and pepper and toss gently. Arrange the asparagus on 6 plates and drizzle with some of the dressing. Mound the potatoes on top, drizzle with the remaining dressing and serve.
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