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Alfred Portale's Jumbo Asparagus Salad

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  • 3 tb Fresh lemon juice
  • 2 ts Lemon zest
  • 1 tb Sherry vinegar
  • Salt and white pepper
  • 3/4 c Extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 lb Asparagus; jumbo (about 12)
  • 2 Shallots; minced
  • 1 ts Minced fresh thyme leaves
  • 1 1/2 lb New potatoes; boiled until tender, sliced thick
  • 2 tb Minced fresh chives
  • 12 sl Prosciutto de Parma (or other cured ham; very thinly sliced
  • 1 qt Cleaned dried lettuce; torn into bite sized pieces
  • 1 Piece Parmesan Reggiano cheese; for shaving
  • 2 Eggs; hard boiled and separated


Alfred Portale's Jumbo Asparagus Salad with Prosciuttode Parma, Parmesan, and Lemon Vinaigrette
1. For the vinaigrette, mix lemon juice, zest, vinegar, and salt and pepper to taste in a medium bowl. Whisk in olive oil and set aside.
2. Bring 1 inch water to boil in a soup kettle. Put asparagus in steamer basket then carefully place steamer basket in kettle and cover and steam over medium-high heat until asparagus spears bend slightly when picked up and flesh at cut end yields when squeezed, 4 to 5 minutes for asparagus under 1/2 inch in diameter, 5 to 6 minutes for the jumbo size. Drain and plunge spears immediately into ice water to stop the cooking process. Drain again, cover, and refrigerate until chilled, as long as overnight.
3. In a medium bowl, combine the shallots, thyme, asparagus, sliced potatoes, and 1 tablespoon chives. Add 1/4 cup vinaigrette toss to coat. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
4. Arrange asparagus-potato mixture with the prosciutto alongside it on 4 large serving plates. Dress lettuces with another 1/4 cup vinaigrette, and arrange a portion on each plate. Use a vegetable peeler to shave Parmesan curls over each salad. Press eggs through a fine sieve. Sprinkle each salad with sieved egg and remaining chives-, serve immediately with remaining dressing passed separately.
Cook's Illustrated, May/June 1993, Page 7. Credit: Stephanie Lyness.
Nationality: USA Course: vegetable side dish Season: spring Method: Combo
Start to Finish 1 hour Preparation 30 minutes Attention 30 minutes Finishing 10 minutes
Converted from Mangia!, Cook's Illustrated 1993-1995 Cookbook
NOTES : Even though Portale peels, bundles, and cooks his asparagus in boiling water, we still prefer the steaming method, even for the jumbos. Of course, large or even medium asparagus can be substituted. Recipe by: Cook's Illustrated, May/June 1993, Page 7.
Posted to MC-Recipe Digest by "Hobbs, D B USO" <> on Mar 10, 1998