Great vegan recipe idea for picnic with friends
This simple but impressive salad is the perfect way to use local, seasonal asparagus in the springtime. Also, I love the sheep’s milk feta from Best Baa- a local farm specializing in… you guessed it, sheep’s milk. Look for their cheeses at the Withrow Park Farmers’Market and Leslieville Cheese Market.
GRILLED LEMON VINAIGRETTE
- 3 lemons, halved across the equator
- 1 tbsp. dijon mustard
- 1 shallot, finely diced
- 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 2-3 tbsp. honey
- 2 lbs asparagus, trimmed of woody ends
- 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 1/2 cup pine nuts, toasted
- 250 grams sheep’s milk feta, shaved with a vegetable peeler or crumbled
- Sea or Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
Heat a grill or a grill pan on high. Place the lemon halves cut-side down on the grill. Grill for about 5 minutes. Turn over and grill other sides for a few more minutes (lemon should have nice grill marks on it, darken and soften). Remove from grill and let cool slightly. When lemons are cool enough to touch, squeeze the juices into a mixing bowl, removing any seeds. Add the diced shallot and the dijon mustard and whisk together. Slowly whisk in the 1/2 cup olive oil, a little at a time, until emulsified. Add the honey and season with salt and pepper to taste.
Heat grill to medium-high. Keeping all the tips facing the same direction, toss the asparagus with 1/4 cup olive oil and season liberally with salt and pepper. Place on the hot grill or grill pan. Grill for 3-5 minutes, turning once, until tender and just cooked through. Set aside. Divide the asparagus among 6 plates in a nicely centred pile with all the tips facing the same direction. Drizzle some of the lemon vinaigrette on the asparagus and around each plate. Sprinkle each serving with pine nuts and some feta. Top with a final seasoning of good sea salt and fresh pepper and drizzle with remaining vinaigrette.