Asparagus

Asparagus Goat Cheese Tart with Whole-Grain Crust

INGREDIENTS:

  • 8 tbsp cold organic unsalted butter, divided

  • 3/4 cup whole-wheat pastry flour

  • 1/2 cup whole-grain spelt flour

  • 1/2 cup oat flour (TRY: Bob’s Red Mill Gluten-Free Whole Grain Oat Flour)

  • 3/4 plus 1⁄8 tsp sea salt, divided

  • Olive oil cooking spray

  • 3/4 lb thin asparagus (NOTE: Trim asparagus tips to 5 inches and discard stalks or save for another use.)

  • 1/8 tsp fresh ground black pepper

  • 6 oz goat cheese

  • 1 cup whole-milk ricotta cheese

  • 2 large eggs

  • Zest of 1 lemon

  • 1 tsp fresh thyme leaves

PREPARATION:

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Lightly grease a 9-inch fluted tart pan with removable bottom with 1/2 tbsp butter (keep remaining butter in refrigerator until ready to use). To a food processor, add flours and 1/2 tsp salt. Pulse until combined. Cut remaining 7 1/2 tbsp butter into cubes and add to flour mixture. Process until mixture is coarse and sandy with small pieces of butter visible, about 3 5-second pulses. With processor running, pour in 1/4 cup cold water and process just until combined, 5 to 10 seconds. (NOTE: Dough will stick together if pressed between your fingers, but will not form a ball.)

  2. Transfer dough to prepared tart pan, distributing clumps of dough evenly in pan. With floured hands, press dough into pan, working it to edges and up sides. Prick all over with a fork. Cover with foil and add about 1 1/2 cups dried beans, uncooked rice or pie weights over top. Bake in center of oven for 15 minutes. Remove foil and weights and continue baking until barely beginning to brown, 10 minutes more. Transfer to a wire rack. (MAKE AHEAD: Crust can be made up to 1 day ahead. Cool completely, wrap in 2 layers of plastic wrap, keeping crust in pan, and refrigerate. Before proceeding, bring to room temperature, about 1 hour.)

  3. Preheat broiler to high and arrange a rack 6 to 8 inches from heat source. Line a large rimmed baking sheet with foil, mist with cooking spray and add asparagus in a single layer. Mist with cooking spray and sprinkle with 1/8 tsp salt and pepper. Broil for 5 to 6 minutes, tossing halfway, until lightly browned and crisp-tender. (MAKE AHEAD: This can be done up to 1 day ahead. Refrigerate in an airtight container then bring to room temperature, about 30 minutes.)

  4. Preheat oven to 375°F. Clean processor bowl and blade. To food processor, add cheeses and remaining 1/4 tsp salt and process until combined, about 8 seconds. Add eggs and process until combined, scraping down bowl as needed, about 8 seconds. (MAKE AHEAD: This can be made up to 1 day ahead. Cover and refrigerate. Before proceeding, bring to room temperature, about 1 hour.) Pour into tart shell. Arrange asparagus over top. Bake in center of oven until set in center, 22 to 25 minutes. Cool on a rack for 10 minutes. Garnish with lemon zest and thyme. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Pecan-Crusted Chicken with Sautéed Asparagus & Mushrooms

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 cup raw unsalted pecans

  • 1 tsp ground coriander

  • 1 tsp ground black pepper, divided

  • ½ tsp each onion powder and garlic powder

  • 3/8 tsp sea salt, divided

  • 1 large egg

  • 2 tbsp plain unsweetened almond milk

  • 4 4-oz boneless, skinless, chicken thighs, pounded to ½-inch thickness

  • 2 tbsp avocado oil, divided

  • 1 shallot, diced

  • 6 shiitake mushrooms, stemmed and sliced

  • 1 bunch asparagus, trimmed

PREPARATION:

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. To a food processor, add pecans; pulse to grind to the consistency of a coarse flour. Season pecans with coriander, ½ tsp pepper, onion powder, garlic powder and 1/8 tsp salt.

  2. To a large, shallow dish, add egg and milk and whisk to combine. Place pecan flour into another large shallow plate. Dip each chicken piece into the egg and then into the pecan mixture, coating both sides.

  3. In a large nonstick skillet on medium-high, heat ½ tbsp oil. Add half of chicken and cook 3 minutes, flip and cook another 3 minutes. Transfer to a parchment-lined baking sheet. Heat ½ tbsp oil, add remaining chicken and repeat; transfer to sheet. Bake for 5 to 7 minutes, until no longer pink inside.

  4. Return skillet to heat and add remaining 1 tbsp oil. Add shallots, mushrooms and asparagus. Season with remaining ½ tsp pepper and ¼ tsp salt. Sauté for 5 minutes. Serve with chicken, and BBQ sauce.

Sesame Noodles with Asparagus & Carrots

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 tbsp tahini paste

  • 1 tbsp sesame oil

  • 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar

  • 2 tsp raw honey

  • Pinch red pepper flakes

  • 1/4 tsp sea salt

  • 8 oz whole-grain spaghetti (or gluten free pasta)

  • 16 asparagus spears, trimmed and cut into 2-inch pieces

  • 2 carrots, peeled and cut into matchsticks

  • 1/2 cup thinly sliced scallions

  • 1 tbsp sesame seeds, toasted

PREPARATION:

  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Meanwhile, prepare sesame dressing: In a small bowl, whisk together tahini, oil, vinegar, 2 tbsp water, honey, pepper flakes and salt; set aside.

  2. Add spaghetti to boiling water and cook al dente according to package directions; drain.

  3. Meanwhile, add about 2 inches of water to another saucepan, then fit with a steamer basket. Bring water to a boil. Add asparagus to basket and steam just until tender, about 2 minutes.

  4. In a large bowl, add asparagus, carrots and scallions. Add spaghetti and sesame dressing; toss to combine. Sprinkle mixture with sesame seeds. Serve warm or chilled.

 

Grilled Asparagus Salad with Feta Hazelnut Crumble

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1/4 small red onion, thinly sliced

  • 2 tbsp fresh lemon juice

  • 16 spears fresh asparagus (about 1 bunch), trimmed

  • 3 tbsp olive oil, divided

  • Sea salt and ground black pepper, to taste

  • 2 cups baby arugula

  • 2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved

TOPPING: (optional)

  • 1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese

  • 1/4 cup toasted unsalted hazelnuts

PREPARATION:

  1. In a small bowl, soak onion in lemon juice for 10 to 15 minutes. Drain, reserving lemon juice.

  2. Meanwhile, preheat a grill or grill pan to medium-high. In a large bowl, toss asparagus with 1 tbsp oil and season with salt and pepper. Add to grill and cook for 2 to 3 minutes per side. Remove from heat and cool to room temperature.

  3. Prepare topping (if using): In a small food processor, pulse cheese and hazelnuts into rough crumbs.

  4. Prepare dressing: In a small bowl, whisk remaining 2 tbsp oil and reserved lemon juice. Season with salt and pepper.

  5. Divide arugula among plates and top with tomatoes, asparagus, onions and dressing, dividing evenly. Garnish with topping.

 

Grilled Zucchini and Summer Squash Salad with Avocado

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 zucchini, cut lengthwise into 4 slabs

  • 1 yellow summer squash, cut lengthwise into 4 slabs

  • 10 asparagus stalks, ends trimmed

  • 1 tbs olive oil

  • 2 cups baby arugula

Avocado Dressing:

  • 1 small ripe avocado, peeled, pitted, diced

  • 2 tbs good-quality balsamic vinegar

  • 2 tsp extra-virgin olive oil

PREPARATION:

To Grill Vegetables:

  1. Heat grill to medium-high.

  2. Lightly coat zucchini, squash, and asparagus with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Grill zucchini and squash for about 3 mins on each side, and asparagus for about 2 mins total, or until they are slightly charred and cooked through but still crisp-tender. Transfer vegetables to a cutting board.

  3. Cut asparagus spears in half lengthwise then crosswise, and cut zucchini and squash on bias into large bite-size pieces.

To Make Avocado Dressing:

  1. In a medium bowl, whisk half of diced avocado with vinegar, breaking up avocado lightly to create a creamy texture.

  2. Slowly drizzle in extra-virgin olive oil while whisking to blend. Season with salt and pepper.

To Serve:

  1. In a large bowl, gently toss grilled vegetables and arugula with enough dressing to coat. Fold in remaining diced avocado. Season with salt and pepper.

  2. Mound salad on plates and serve any remaining dressing on side.