Monday, June 4, 2018

White Asparagus Strawberry Salad

This colorful spring salad has unusual ingredients and fabulous flavor. The recipe takes full advantage of the last of the white asparagus, called "white gold" in Germany,  and the plump and juicy and affordable strawberries.

White parboiled asparagus, fresh strawberries, healthy sprouts, savory Emmental cheese are arranged on a platter then drizzled with a homemade strawberry-raspberry flavored vinaigrette. The salad is finished by sprinkling caramelized cashews over the top. 

For substitutions, switch out swiss cheese for the Emmenthal in the salad. If you prefer other types of nuts like almonds, sunflower seeds or walnuts, those would work just as well. 
For less sweetness, skip the caramelizing and scatter the raw nuts over the salad. Use baby green asparagus if white asparagus is too difficult to find. 

Don't forgo the step of peeling the white asparagus before parboiling. 

White Asparagus Strawberry Salad
Prep Time: 30 minutes 
Cook Time: 25 minutes 
Yield: serves 4
  • 1 tablespoons brown sugar 
  • 1/3 cup raw cashew nuts
  • 1 bunch white asparagus
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter salt to taste 
  • pinch of white granulated sugar
  • 5 ounces Emmental cheese
  • 1 pound fresh strawberries
  • 2 +1/2 cups fresh mixed sprouts, loosely packed
  • 5 tablespoons olive oil 
  • 2 teaspoons strawberry jelly
  • 4 tablespoons raspberry balsamic vinegar dressing
  • salt and freshly ground pepper 
  • Place a layer of baking paper beside the stove. 
  • Melt the brown sugar in a pan. Add the raw cashews and sauté until they caramelize. Transfer the cashews to the baking paper to cool. 
  • Trim and peel the white asparagus. Cut into thirds. 
  • Bring 5 cups of water to boil in a saucepan. Add butter, salt and white granulated sugar. 
  • Add the white asparagus pieces, cover the pot and boil for 5-8 minutes or until the asparagus is tender, but not too soft. 
  • Drain the cooked asparagus and set aside to cool. 
  • Cut the Emmental cheese into cubes. 
  • Wash and de-stem the fresh strawberries. Pat dry and cut each one into quarters. 

Make the Strawberry Raspberry Vinaigrette:
  • In a small bowl whisk together the olive oil, strawberry preserves and raspberry balsamic vinegar. 
  • Add salt and freshly ground pepper to taste. 
Assemble the Salad:
  • On a large platter, arrange the white asparagus pieces, cubed Emmental cheese, fresh strawberry quarters and sprouts. 
  • Drizzle the strawberry, raspberry vinaigrette over the top of the salad.
  • Scatter the caramelized cashews over the top and serve.

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