I work from home. This is both a blessing and a curse. Yoga pants at all hours – plus. Forgetting how normal, social interaction works because you sometimes don’t leave the house for days at a time – definite minus. Getting to make my meals at home fits squarely into the plus category. It’s helpful from a budgeting stand point of course (no $12 a day sweetgreen habit for me thank you very much), but it also allows me to get creative about what I eat midday – instead of just reaching for the easiest or cheapest options. But occasionally I too get into a lunchtime rut…recently it’s been large bowls of pasta that leave me carby, crabby, and craving a long, afternoon nap.
So how do I stir up my routine? Well usually I turn to what’s in or is about to be in season. It always helps me to get excited for what I haven’t had in a while. Because of our annoyingly elongated winter I’m totally over the hearty stews and heavy casseroles. I need something light, bright, and positively springy – even if it is just barely breaking 50 degrees*. And then I remember this salad. It’s barely even a recipe to be honest – more a co-mingling of fresh ideas that break through the winter doldrums. It comes together in mere minutes and is a lunchtime revelation. I’m sure you’ll agree, and if not there’s always chipotle.
*If you thought this post had the slimmest chance of not mentioning the weather…well I guess you don’t know me as well as you thought! I am sorry though – it’s a sickness really.
Super Fast Asparagus Salad
Servings: 3 TO 4 Time: 10 MINUTES
This is a stupid-simple salad, so it’s important to use top-notch ingredients. You should reach for your best parm, olive oil, and asparagus. But also, I’m not in your kitchen, so you do what you want.
1 lb of asparagus, washed, dried and trimmed of woody ends (about 2 inches up)
2 T lemon juice
1 T extra virgin olive oil
2 T chopped parsley
Ground black pepper
Good quality parmesan cheese
Optional: Fried or soft boiled eggs
Slice the asparagus thinly crosswise. I did this at an angle because it’s pretty, but you can definitely just make little coins. You’re aiming for roughly ¼ inch thick slices.
In a bowl, toss the asparagus with the lemon juice, olive oil, and parsley. Season to taste with salt and pepper, keeping in mind that the cheese will add some additional saltiness. Let sit for 5-10 minutes. This would be a great time to start a seven minute or perfect fried egg to turn this into a light lunch.
Using a vegetable peeler, shave ribbons of cheese all over the salad. Or if you’d rather, just grate it on like crazy.
Serve immediately, garnishing with extra lemon and those sexy eggs if you made em.