Grilled Mushrooms, Asparagus & Parmesan Salad
SERVES 4 SUPER EASY
This can be a side dish, a first course, or a light lunch if served on a bed of fresh salad greens. Cooking in a ribbed grill pan brings out the best of the vegetables, which hardly need more than a drizzle of oil, a splash of balsamic vinegar and a sprinkle of Parmesan. One of our favourites!
4 large field mushrooms or 175 g (6 oz) brown caps or oyster mushrooms
1 bunch of large asparagus spears
2 to 3 tbsp light olive oil
Salt and ground black pepper
4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
2 tbsp flat–leaf parsley, chopped
25 g (1 oz) Parmesan cheese, slivered or grated
Cracked black pepper
Flat–leaf parsley to garnish
Trim the stalks from the mushrooms and wipe off any excess dirt with kitchen paper. Cut the coarse stalks off the bottom of each asparagus spear if necessary. Blanch the asparagus in boiling salted water for 5 minutes or until just al dente. Rinse under cold water and drain well.
Heat a ridged grill pan (preferably a heavy–duty, cast–iron type) or a heavy frying pan over a high heat. Brush the mushrooms and asparagus with light olive oil and season well. Cook the mushrooms for 3 minutes on each side until tender and marked from the grill pan. Set aside and keep warm. Cook the asparagus for about 3 minutes, turning occasionally.
Serve straight from the pan with the mushrooms or asparagus left whole. Alternatively, thickly slice the mushrooms and cut the asparagus into angled slices and serve warm or at room temperature.
Divide the mushrooms and asparagus between serving plates, sprinkle with extra virgin olive oil, balsamic vinegar, parsley, Parmesan and a little cracked black pepper and garnish.