"Pinkies Up" Asparagus Salad

Everybody these days is trying to eat just a little healthier.  I am and you are too.  I know this, because you would not have clicked on a salad recipe otherwise.  Unless you just love me, which is the only other excuse I can think of.  I might even go with that one.  Yeah.....that.

Let's face it though.  Salad can get REALLY boring after a while.  I know that just about every night I make sure we have a salad.  I grew up eating a salad with dinner just about every night.  And every night it's the same thing.......iceberg lettuce, cucumbers, tomatoes, red onion and oil and vinegar.  EVERY.  DAMN.  NIGHT.

Now don't get me wrong, I love our traditional every day salad.  I'm not saying I don't.  But I don't want to replace meals with it if you know what I'm saying.  I want something different.  Something bolder.  Something a little fancier so I can put my chubby pinky up while eating it and feel like I can actually afford a Starbucks venti pumpkin spice latte every single day.  Hey, a girl can daydream right?

Well, I promise you, this salad might not be nothing to look at and it may have a few components to it....no bold colors, no WOW factor in the visual department.  BUT I SOLEMNLY SWEAR THIS SALAD IS PERFECTION!!!  

Don't believe me?  I triple dog dare you to try it.  Make a liar out of me.  But I bet you that you can't.  ;-)

"Pinkies Up" Asparagus Salad

Prep Time:  15 minutes
Total Time:  25 minutes
Serves:  2 

"Pinkies Up" Asparagus Salad
Ingredients:

FOR ASPARAGUS:
1 lb asparagus, trimmed
2 TBSP extra virgin olive oil
tsp of lemon juice
Salt and pepper to taste

FOR POACHED EGG:
2 large eggs
1 TBSP white wine vinegar
pinch of salt

FOR SALAD
4 cups of arugula
shaved parmiggiano
fresh basil
lemon zest

FOR DRESSING
1/4 cup of extra virgin olive oil
tsp dijon mustard
4 TBSP white wine vinegar
tiny splash of lemon juice
1 tsp water
tsp fresh basil
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper (white if you totally want to be fancy)

Method:

Preheat your oven to 450.  Wash and trim your asparagus.  Pour 2 TBSP of oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper and work it around with your hands on a baking sheet until well coated.  Roast for 5-10 minutes depending on thickness of your asparagus.  You are looking for good caramelization.  Sprinkle with lemon juice and set aside.

Wash and prepare your arugula.  Let it dry in a colander while you get everything else together.

Zest your lemon.  Set aside.

In a medium bowl whisk together the dijon, white vinegar, lemon juice water, basil and salt and pepper.  When incorporated nicely, start to drizzle in your olive oil, whisking vigorously as to not let the dressing separate.  Set aside.

Bring about 2 quarts of water  and the vinegar and pinch of salt to a nice simmer.  Make a cyclone with the end of a wooden spoon.  Crack your very cold egg into a small bowl and drop it into the center of the cyclone.  Allow the egg to poach for about 3 minutes.  Remove it with a slotted spoon and set it onto a small saucer so you can easily slide it onto the salad.

In a large bowl drizzle 1 TBSP of dressing over the arugula to lightly dress it.

Arrange the dressed arugula onto 2 plates.  Place the asparagus on top of the arugula in any arrangement you desire.  Using a vegetable peeler, shave a few nice pieces of the cheese onto the salad.  Gently slide the egg off of the saucer onto the top of the salad.

Drizzle with a tsp or 2 of the dressing.  Top with freshly ground black pepper, lemon zest and fresh basil.

Lastly, ENJOY!! The tartness of the vinegarette, the spicyness of the arugula and the richness of the egg are absolutely amazing.  I promise this salad will be in your dinner rotation more than a little bit!

As always, get your asses in the kitchen.

Love, Krissi xoxo

Krissi Biasiello is a native of South Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  Cooking since she was a little girl with her large Italian family, she decided to leave her paralegal job and shoot for the stars on FOX’s cooking competition show, MasterChef.  She beat out 43,000 homecooks across America and came in 4th place.  Under the scrutiny of Gordon Ramsay, Graham Elliot and Joe Bastianich, Krissi has made her mark in the culinary world.  She now shares her recipes with all of you!  Her rustic, homestyle take on everything will win you over and will definitely “get your asses in the kitchen”. 
To contact Krissi for appearances, in-home demonstrations, catering and more, you can find her below. 

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Krissi Biasiello - Twitter


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