Asparagus with Gremolata Dressing

Gremolata (also spelled gremolada) – a mixture of garlic, parsley and grated lemon zest-is the traditional garnish for the northern Italian braised veal shank dish known as Osso Buco. I have incorporated this lively combination into a citrus vinaigrette for a chilled salad of lightly steamed asparagus. Serve with chicken, seafood, roast lamb.

2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon (packed) grated lemon zest
Grey sea salt, fine grain
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon fresh orange juice
6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Freshly ground Sarawak black pepper
2 pounds asparagus, medium to large size stalks

Place the parsley, garlic, lemon zest, ¼ teaspoon sea salt, lemon juice and orange juice in a small bowl. Mix with a whisk. Slowly whisk in the olive oil and season with black pepper. Set aside to allow the flavors to develop.

Trim the asparagus by snapping off the ends (they will break where the tender and tough parts meet). There is no need to peel the stalks. Place the asparagus in a steamer basket and steam for 3 to 5 minutes, depending on the size, or until the spears are tender yet offer a bit of resistance when pierced with the tip of a sharp knife. Transfer to a platter. Give the dressing a final whisk, taste, add more sea salt and black pepper as needed, and spoon over the asparagus. Roll the asparagus in the dressing to coat completely.

Serve warm or let the asparagus cool to room temperature for about ½ hour, gently rolling the spears in the dressing from time to time. 

Recipe Copyright Deirdre Davis 2016
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