Warmed Grilled Asparagus Salad with a Slow-Cooked Egg
Source: Mark Dommen, One Market Restaurant
This recipe was demonstrated for CUESA’s Market to Table program on April 4, 2015.
20 stalks jumbo asparagus
¾ cup extra-virgin olive oil
4 large shallots, chopped
¼ cup Banyuls vinegar
¼ cup vegetable stock
1 tablespoon sugar
Fresh ground black pepper
¼ pound pepper cress or water cress
Maldon sea salt
2 tablespoons chopped fresh tarragon
Squeeze of Meyer lemon
Optional additions: duck ham, pancetta, fresh croutons, mustard blossoms (for garnish)
Place the eggs into a 62ºC (143.5ºF) water bath for 45 minutes prior to serving the salad. It takes 45 minutes to cook the egg at 62ºC, but it will result in a beautifully cooked egg with perfect consistency.
Put 4 asparagus stalks aside for later use. Place a large pot of water on the stove and bring to a boil. Take the other 16 asparagus stalks and remove the fibrous portion from the root end. Next, using a vegetable peeler, peel the lower half of the asparagus all the way around. When the water has come to a boil, season it with enough sea salt so it tastes like the sea. Add the asparagus stalks and cook until they are still slightly crunchy. Plunge them into ice water to immediately stop the cooking. Remove from the water and dry on a paper towel.
Heat a grill.
Take the other four asparagus stalks and remove the fibrous portion of the root end. Shave them as thinly as possible using a mandolin.
To make the vinaigrette, heat half a cup of the extra-virgin olive oil in a medium sauce pan and add the shallots. Sweat the shallots until they are soft, without giving them any color. Add the Banyuls vinegar, vegetable stock, and sugar, and season with sea salt and a healthy amount of fresh ground black pepper. Keep warm.
Brush the asparagus very lightly with oil; you don’t want them to flare up when you place them on the grill. Season with sea salt and pepper and place them on the grill. Turn them once they’ve acquired a bit of color, approximately 3-5 minutes. Remove from the grill and divide among four plates.
Remove the eggs from the water and crack the shells. Remove the shells and gently place each egg on top of the asparagus.
Add the tarragon to the vinaigrette and spoon the vinaigrette around the asparagus.
Take the shaved asparagus and the pepper cress and place them into a bowl. Dress with a drizzle of olive oil and a squeeze of Meyer lemon. Toss and place around each egg, creating a nest effect. Divide it equally among the four plates.
Drizzle with the remaining extra virgin olive oil, and top the egg with a sprinkle of Maldon sea salt and fresh ground black pepper. Garnish with optional additions, if using.