I planted my spring garden a few weeks before leaving for California and when I arrived back on Monday, I was pleased to see little tufts of radish leaves and spinach poking through. Spring, now that I’m an official midwesterner, has become my favorite season.
There’s something magical about the sudden change from gloomy, grey filled days to ones filled with sunshine, flowers and birds chirping. I swear the last few weeks have seemed like living in a musical; the moment temperatures swing above 70, our entire neighborhood springs alive. Everyone is out walking, gardening and enjoying the outdoors after being shut-in for what seems like months.
So, I’m celebrating too. In my kitchen. I knew I wanted to celebrate spring produce in a salad, but one that felt fancy enough to serve at brunches, baby or bridal showers and Easter next weekend. Shaved asparagus, while kinda a pain to prepare, is the perfect centerpiece.
I love the subtle crisp texture of shaved asparagus. To prep, slice off the ends then use a vegetable peeler or mandolin to create wispy, see-through strands. Put on a podcast (may I suggest S-Town, Accused or Pod Save the World) and enjoy this meditative process. It probably took me less than 10 minutes to shave an entire bunch, which is well worth the time and texture it creates.
This salad works because of the layering of flavors. If it grows in the spring, I put it in this salad. Thinly sliced radishes, mint, slivered almonds, couscous and a lemon-mustard dressing. Cooked couscous almost clings to the shaved asparagus like pasta, so I don’t recommend subbing out another grain in it’s place.
If you plan on serving this to a crowd, prepare all of the ingredients ahead of time and the dressing separately. Then, just before serving, toss, season and serve.
If you try this recipe, let me know! Leave a comment, rate it, and tag your Instagram photos with #delishknowledge . I absolutely love seeing your creations. Happy cooking!Print
Shaved Asparagus Spring Salad! Perfect for showers, brunch, Easter and more. Vegan.
- 1 cup couscous, uncooked
- 1 bunch asparagus, shaved with a vegetable peeler or mandoline
- 6– 7 each radishes, thinly sliced
- 1 tablespoon dijon mustard
- 1 lemon, zest and juice
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- ¼ cup mint, chiffonade
- ¼ cup almonds, sliced
- Cook couscous according to package directions. Fluff with a fork, then transfer to the fridge to let cool to room temperature.
- While couscous is cooking, use a peeler to shave asparagus spears into thin ribbons. Next thinly slice radishes. Set aside.
- Whisk together mustard, lemon and salt in a bowl. While whisking, slowly drizzle olive oil in to create vinaigrette.
- In a small pan, toast almonds over low-medium heat until they are fragrant and a slight golden brown.
- Once couscous has cooled completely, mix together with mint, vinaigrette, asparagus, radishes, and almonds. Season to taste, as needed, and serve. This salad taste best when eaten within a few hours of dressing. To make in advance, wait to dress until ready to serve.