Roasted asparagus is this fresh and light highlight Asparagus salad Dressed in an oil-free champagne vinaigrette dressing with simple ingredients. this Asparagus Salad Recipe Tastes like summer in a pot.
Whenever the farmers market is full of farm-fresh produce I shop for the freshest ingredients. And nothing tastes better than fresh market asparagus! With warmer weather comes beautiful vibrant vegetables and fresh salads. One of my favorite vegetables is asparagus, so I decided to make a roasted asparagus salad recipe.
For a more Mediterranean flavor, you can also enjoy the Greek orzo salad. Or, if you love lemon, try this Lemon Orzo Salad. And if you love orzo as much as I do, try vegetable orzo this summer.
How to Select Asparagus
Although asparagus is available year-round, spring is the best season to buy asparagus. Not only is asparagus fresh in the spring, it’s also cheap from April to July.
When selecting asparagus at the store, look for firm, straight, smooth stalks. Asparagus, however, comes in four sizes: small, standard, large and jumbo. In my experience, the thinner the asparagus, the tastier and fresher it is. I know many people who prefer thicker stems and less flavor. Because of that, you can choose the thickness you like.
Just so you know, my cooking instructions apply to thin stalks of asparagus, so adjust the cooking time accordingly.
- orzo: Orzo is a type of pasta that looks like rice but is actually made from whole grains.
- Asparagus: You should not eat the lower end of asparagus because it is hard, bitter and stringy, making it unpleasant to eat. Therefore, it is recommended to remove this part before cooking and eat only the spears and tips.
- green onion: Green onions (also known as scallions) are long and thin, usually no wider than a finger, and bright white with a dark green top underneath. They have a different flavor than most onions because they are mild and not too pungent.
- Grape tomatoes (or tomatoes of choice): I love tomatoes! Bite-sized, beautiful and flavorful grape tomatoes have thick skin and less water.
- Parsley: Its strong “green” flavor brings a delicious crunch to salads and a fresh flavor to other ingredients.
- Kalamata Olives: The flavor profile of Kalamata olives is rich, fruity, meaty
- Lemon: Nothing tastes better than fresh citrus and other ingredients with asparagus in this asparagus salad recipe.
Substitute salad ingredients
If you don’t like Orzo, don’t let that stop you. Additionally, I like to make an asparagus salad using a variety of other grains and replace the orzo:
- Choose another grain such as quinoa, farro, barley or brown rice instead of orzo pasta.
- I chose whole-grain orzo, but gluten-free orzo is also available in stores.
- Add greens to the asparagus salad, such as kale, romaine lettuce or spinach.
- Choose red onions instead of scallions for a sweeter flavor or yellow onions for a stronger onion flavor.
- Replacing the parsley with basil is also a great flavor for this salad recipe.
Once I create a new salad recipe, the first thing I think about is the dressing. For me, it’s all about the salad dressing!
Over time, I quickly learned to make oil-free dressings that I love. For example, champagne vinaigrette takes on the light flavor and acidity, making for a light and fresh dressing. Of course, another bonus is the four simple ingredients:
- Champagne vinegar: The flavor and acidity of champagne vinaigrette make for a light, light and fresh dressing.
- Maple syrup Offers a healthy sweetener and replaces sugar in recipes.
- Dijon Mustard: I love Dijon mustard. Its tanginess cuts the vinegar’s acid.
- the water: I always use water instead of oil. It thins dressings and acts as a balancing agent in dressings.
Replace the dressing
- White wine vinegar, apple cider vinegar or sherry vinegar are often substituted for champagne vinegar.
- In recipes, date syrup or agave nectar is used instead of maple syrup.
- If you don’t have Dijon mustard, stone ground mustard is the closest substitute.
Start by roasting the asparagus. Instead of using oil, I rinsed the asparagus in fresh lemon juice and sprinkled it with garlic powder and onion powder. Another tip for roasting without oil is to use a silicone baking mat.
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees
- Roast for 15 minutes
- Remove the asparagus from the oven and cool completely before adding to the asparagus salad ingredients.
Although orzo looks like rice, it is a rice-shaped pasta. Traditional orzo is not gluten-free, but gluten-free orzo is Available and works well with this recipe. For example, Delallo makes gluten-free corn and rice orzo, which is fabulous. I used regular orzo for this asparagus salad recipe because I already had a bag in the pantry.
Unlike other pastas, orzo cooks incredibly quickly (8 minutes), so most of the salad work is chopping the vegetables and preparing the quick and easy dressing.
Another helpful hint is to make sure you run cold water through the cooked orzo to stop the asparagus salad from cooking from being served cold. However, if you prefer a warm salad, serve it immediately.
Once the orzo and asparagus have cooled, add all ingredients to a large bowl.
Then prepare the salad in advance and refrigerate until ready to serve. Therefore, the dressing acts as a marinade for the vegetables and orzo, helping to enhance the flavor as it cools.
If you cut the ends off, you’ll throw away more asparagus and the spears won’t look as long and elegant. For many reasons, I think pruning is a much better method.
Be wary of any recipe that instructs you to peel the asparagus before cooking. Not only is it labor-intensive, but it’s not really necessary.
The best way to trim asparagus is also the most obvious: with a chef’s knife and cutting board. Line up all the spears in a row and cut off the ends at the same time. Cuts should be made where the stems turn from white to green.
- Cut off the ends of the asparagus and then cut them into pieces of the same size, so that they roast at the same rate.
- Toss in lemon juice for extra freshness while cooking. This makes it easier to stick the seasoning to the asparagus while cooking.
- For fresher, longer-lasting tomatoes, store them at room temperature instead of refrigerating after purchase.
- Serve as an entrée salad or side salad.
- This salad is great for a pot-luck dinner or summer barbecue party!
Additionally, I recommend eating the asparagus salad alone or adding more greens for a more nutrient-dense salad. I served the asparagus salad on a bed of live lettuce for this special version of the asparagus salad.
If you love fresh seasonal vegetables, give this asparagus salad recipe a try.
Recommended salad for summer
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Roasted asparagus highlights this fresh and light asparagus salad with simple ingredients dressed in an oil-free champagne vinaigrette dressing. Asparagus salad tastes like summer in a bowl.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Line a baking sheet with a silicone baking mat or parchment paper.
Wash and trim the tough ends of the asparagus.
Cut the asparagus into even bite-sized pieces.
Toss asparagus with ½ lemon in a bowl.
Place asparagus in a single layer on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
Sprinkle with garlic and onion powder.
Cook the asparagus for 15 minutes.
Remove the asparagus from the oven and let it cool completely before adding to the salad.
How to cook orjo
Cook orzo according to package directions.
Remove from heat and rinse in cold water until pasta is cool. Drain excess water from colander.
Once cool, pour the orjo into a bowl.
Making the Champagne Vinegar Dressing
Making Asparagus Salad
Pour cold orjo into a bowl.
Add all other ingredients including the cold roasted asparagus.
Pour the dressing over the salad.
Toss and refrigerate until ready to serve.
- Choose gluten-free orzo for a gluten-free option.
- Remove the tough ends of the asparagus with a knife without breaking the ends.
- Cut the asparagus into equal-sized pieces so that it roasts evenly in the oven.
- Tossing asparagus in lemon juice helps the spices stick to the asparagus while cooking.
- If using thin asparagus, adjust the cooking time to 7 minutes instead of 15 minutes for thicker spears.
- Rinse the orzo in cold water in a colander until cool. Then shake the colander to remove any excess water before adding to the bowl.
- Make the salad ahead of time, so it tastes better in the fridge while chilling.
- Serve as a side salad, entrée salad, or add greens for a more nutrient-dense salad option.
Worship: 6gCalories: 204kcalSugars: 40gProtein: 8gFat: 2gSaturated Fat: 0.3gPolyunsaturated Fats: 0.4gMonounsaturated fats: 1gSodium: 155mgPotassium: 411mgFiber: 4gSugar: 8gVitamin A: 1327IUVitamin C: 21mgCalcium: 62mgIron: 3mg
Oh! My name is Kathy, I am a retired high school English teacher and vegetarian and blogger. My entire blog is completely plant-based vegetarian. I truly believe that what we eat and how we live determines our health and the preservation of our planet! 🙂