Summer has all but slipped away being replaced by cooler days and the subtle hues of autumn. Thankfully we don’t live in a country where we have a particularly cold autumn, our winters only really last 3 months, so there are still a few weeks of warm weather left to organize a get together with family & friends to enjoy this delicious dish under the trees with a glass of something cold.
With the backdrop of autumn this recipe stands out given it has a distinct summer feel. The dish has lots of colour and flavour is what you will find a pleasant addition to your plate. The parmesan cheese in the dish can be substituted with any flavourful hard cheese you may have on hand like pecorino or Grana Padano.
Interesting Fact: Asparagus is loaded with nutrients: Asparagus is a very good source of fiber, folate, vitamins A, C, E and K, as well as chromium, a trace mineral that enhances the ability of insulin to transport glucose from the bloodstream into cells. This herbaceous plant—along with avocado, kale and Brussels sprouts—is a particularly rich source of glutathione, a detoxifying compound that helps break down carcinogens and other harmful compounds like free radicals. This is why eating asparagus may help protect against and fight certain forms of cancer, such as bone, breast, colon, larynx and lung cancers.
- 1 Garlic clove, bruised
- Juice (1/4 cup) of 1 lemon
- 1 Tsp (5ml) Dijon mustard
- 1/3 cup (80ml) finely grated parmesan
- Olive oil
- Himalayan pink salt and black pepper
- 1 Bunch asparagus, woody ends trimmed
- 1 Packet (100g) cherry tomatoes
- 80 - 100g Parma ham
- Rub the inside of a medium-sized bowl with garlic.
- Add lemon juice and mustard and mix well.
- Add parmesan, a little at a time, mixing well so that it dissolves in juice.
- Once mixture is smooth, add enough olive oil to form a thick glossy dressing, about 1/2 cup (125ml) and season.
- Blanch asparagus and arrange on platter.
- Add tomatoes.
- Drape over ham and drizzle with dressing.
- Serve immediately.
- This makes a great lunch of summer or an interesting side salad for 6 people.
- If you pack all of the ingredients separately it will travel well as a packed lunch for work or your next picnic!