In my previous post, I highlighted some seasonal fruits and vegetables which are at their prime in April: Asparagus, Grapefruit and Rucola (also called arugula in the US or rocket in the UK).
I came up with a simple recipe which uses all three of these ingredients, called ‘Asparagus and Rucola Salad with Grapefruit Vinaigrette’. Although asparagus can be eaten raw, I lightly grill it for this recipe to deepen its flavour. The rucola works as a simple base and can be mixed with other spring greens of you find its flavour too overpowering. And I felt the best way to use the grapefruit was in a dressing.
This recipe can be used as a base on which to build a more complex salad by adding additional ingredients on top. Otherwise, it is delicious served simply as it is.
ASPARAGUS and RUCOLA SALAD with GRAPEFRUIT VINAIGRETTE
(makes half a cup – recipe can be doubled)
5 Tbsp (75ml) freshly squeezed juice from a grapefruit
1/2 tsp apple cider vinegar
1 Tbsp maple syrup or honey
1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1/4 tsp sea salt
1-2 handfuls of rucola per person (or some other green leaf)
Asparagus spears (for thin asparagus, allow 8-10 spears per person; for thick asparagus, allow 4-5 spears per person)
Olive oil (to lightly coat the asparagus spears before grilling)
Shaved parmesan (optional)
- Prepare Grapefruit Vinaigrette by combining all the dressing ingredients together in a jar with a lid and shaking it well. Set aside until ready to use.
- Wash and dry the rucola leaves.
- Trim the end off the asparagus spears and toss them lightly in extra virgin olive oil. Grill in a panini press on medium heat until you see grill lines. Alternatively, preheat the oven to 200C/400F and roast the asparagus spears in the middle of the oven for 20 minutes (turning halfway through.)
- When ready to serve, toss the rucola leaves in the grapefruit vinaigrette. If serving in individual plates, place 1-2 handfuls of rucola on each plate and then the asparagus spears on top. If there is any leftover dressing, you can spoon a little bit over the asparagus.
- As an option, you can add a few shavings of parmesan cheese on top of the salad.
- Serve immediately.