Saturday, September 28, 2013

Asparagus and White Bean Salad

From the kitchen of One Perfect Bite...Since I've committed to Meatless Mondays, I've been searching for recipes that are substantial enough to serve for dinner and tasty enough to keep a confirmed meat eater happy. That search, and local asparagus selling for less than $2.00 a pound, led me to this light and delicious entree. The recipe first appeared in Gourmet Magazine in April of 2006. The original recipe used this salad as a brushcetta topping. I've carried it a bit farther and use the salad as a filler for flour tortillas, rice wrappers or lettuce wraps. I've changed the presentation because the bruschetta proved to be very messy. There is no binder in the filling and a lot of it ended up on the table or floor. Those of you who try this recipe will be very pleased with its taste and texture. It is next to no work to assemble, but it is important to follow a couple of the directions to a tee. The asparagus must be sliced no thicker than 1/8 of an inch. While it briefly sits in a warm marinade, it is not cooked and anything thicker than that would be tough to chew. It's also important to serve the salad soon after it has been prepared. It loses color as it sits and unless your favorite color is olive drab, it behooves you to get this to the table in a timely fashion. Please note that the cheese is shaved from a brick and that the recipe measurement is for shaved, not grated, cheese. I really like this entree. It is light, bright, different and altogether perfect for a weekend lunch or a light supper. Here's the recipe.

Asparagus and White Bean Salad...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite, courtesy of Gourmet Magazine


1 pound medium asparagus, trimmed

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

1/2 teaspoon finely grated fresh lemon zest

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon black pepper

2 (15- to 19-oz) cans white beans, rinsed and drained well

1 (1/2-lb) piece Parmigiano-Reggiano

1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

Flour tortillas, rice wrappers, or toasted sliced country-style bread


1) Cut asparagus on a diagonal into 1/8-inch-thick slices.

2) Bring oil, lemon zest, juice, salt, and pepper to a simmer in a 4-quart heavy saucepan, then stir in beans and asparagus. Remove from heat and let stand, uncovered, 10 minutes. Meanwhile, remove enough cheese from piece with a vegetable peeler to measure about 1/2 cup shavings. Add shavings to beans along with parsley, then toss. Adjust salt to taste.

3) Spoon salad into wrappers or spread on warm toast. Serve immediately. Yield: 4 servings.

You might also enjoy these recipes:

Savory Asparagus and Goat Cheese Tart - One Perfect Bite

Asparagus and Lemon Grass Risotto - One Perfect Bite

Spring Vegetable Ragout - One Perfect Bite

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