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April 26, 2012

Market Fresh: Grilled Asparagus & Lemon Salt

Last weekend marked the opening of a handful of  farmers’ markets here in Seattle. Since it was also the first time this year the thermometer reached above 70°F in the Emerald City, it would have been a shame not to get outdoors and enjoy a little vitamin D while browsing what our local farmers had on hand.

Photo by Jeff Powell

Asparagus was everywhere at Broadway Market—April being the prime month in its growing season. We couldn’t be happier. We saw these delicious-looking bundles and couldn’t resist snatching them up; we’ve had our eye on the Grilled Asparagus with Lemon Salt recipe from the Nordstrom Flavors cookbook.

What could be better to celebrate the season than fresh, local ingredients prepared simply to highlight at-their-peak flavors? It was the perfect accompaniment to a light dinner with friends under the sun, so why not share the love?

Here is chef Michael Northern’s recipe for Grilled Asparagus with Lemon Salt (available for download as a PDF to print or save) from our Nordstrom Flavors cookbook, available in stores.


Photo: Noel Barnhurst

Grilled Asparagus with Lemon Salt
Serves 4
1 pound not-too-thin asparagus
1 lemon
2 teaspoons flaky sea salt such as fleur de sel or Maldon
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Freshly ground black pepper

Prepare a medium fire in a charcoal grill, or preheat a gas grill on medium.

Snap off the woody stem ends from the asparagus. Using a vegetable peeler, peel the stalks to within about 4 inches of the tips.

Grate the zest from the lemon into a small bowl. Add the salt to the zest, and rub together with your fingers until combined. Squeeze the juice from the lemon into a separate bowl.

In a shallow dish, toss the asparagus with the lemon juice, and then with the oil. Place the spears on the grill, arranging them perpendicular to the grid so they don’t fall through. Grill until you see marks seared on the undersides of the asparagus, about 2 minutes. Roll the asparagus over and grill until the second sides are seared and the spears are crisp-tender, about 2 minutes more.

Using a spatula, transfer the asparagus to a platter. Sprinkle with the lemon salt and season with pepper. Serve hot or at room temperature.

Jeff Powell

Comments

Jane G April 30, 2012 at 4:11 pm

Love this! It made me so hungry – can’t wait to try it.

Jeff, Blog Editor May 1, 2012 at 9:25 am

Thanks, Jane. Let us know if you try it!

Christian May 13, 2012 at 3:06 pm

Very nice! Though I think I prefer kosher salt over sea salt…melts much nicer and has a great clean flavor.

Jeff, Blog Editor May 13, 2012 at 3:08 pm

Christian, that’s a good point. Though depending on the recipe, sometimes I find a little salty, textural crunch is just what the doctor ordered.

Anonymous May 13, 2012 at 3:16 pm

yummy i grill this all the time but not with lemon or salt. i think i’ll try it with pepper.

Jeff, Blog Editor May 13, 2012 at 3:18 pm

Pepper sounds like an interesting spin; let us know how it turns out!

Starlet May 13, 2012 at 4:49 pm

Looking forward to trying this out as my first easy recipe on an upcoming purchase of the Weber Q220 mini gas grill. I plan on using it for grilling veggies which I currently roast in the oven.

Quasi-vegan May 13, 2012 at 5:20 pm

Why peel the stalks? Waste of good, edible fiber! Break only where it naturally snaps.

Jeff, Blog Editor May 13, 2012 at 6:49 pm

QV, I use natural-spap method the most, too. Though sometimes I peel away the woodier skin, if the asparagus isn’t too young.

Jan May 13, 2012 at 11:53 pm

We don’t grill, but that recipe makes me think I need to get a grill pan to use on the stovetop….looks so good!

Jeff, Blog Editor May 13, 2012 at 11:59 pm

Jan, thanks for your comment! It’s such a delicious, simple recipe. If I were in a pinch without a grill or stovetop grill pan, I’d just toss these under my oven’s broiler.

abuti May 14, 2012 at 8:52 am

sound so delish

Robin May 14, 2012 at 12:16 pm

I’d like to tell you how I do mine. It is so easy and
turns out every time.

Preheat oven to 475
toss asparagus with olive oil, garlic salt, pepper and freshly grated parmesan cheese. Bake for exactly
12 minutes. Couldn’t be easier and so good.

Jeff, Blog Editor May 14, 2012 at 1:35 pm

Robin, that sounds delicious; thanks for sharing! Of course anything with freshly grated parmesan gets a thumbs up in my book.

Mary May 14, 2012 at 1:52 pm

Robin, I agree with Jeff. Cheese and garlic sounds delicious!

Anonymous May 22, 2012 at 7:51 pm

I adore this recipe! Do you consider this to be your best, or perhaps is there one more you would suggest?

Jeff, Blog Editor May 23, 2012 at 10:59 am

Thank you! It’s so hard to pick a favorite. We have many to love in our Nordstrom cookbooks available in stores. And more recipes to come in our newest recipe book set to be published this fall. In the meantime, here are a couple other recipes you might enjoy that we’ve shared previously.

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