• Campbell Whitman

White Asparagus Salad with Blue Cheese & Bacon

Growing up American, you are used to seeing blue cheese dressing on menus and/or in your household refrigerator. Here in Europe, it's not a standard "sauce". I do find that a bummer for europeans though because it really is, one of the ultimate umami dressings/dips ever created. It's creamy and tangy, it's bright and rich and it hits all of your taste buds as you eat it. I'd call it a magical, blue cheese explosion of the tongue. Voilá.

White Asparagus Salad with Blue Cheese & Bacon

serves 2

500 g white asparagus 8-10 pieces peeled VERY well (each asparagus weighed between 40-60 g before peeling)

60-80 ml water (1/4 - 1/3 c)

1 T butter

1 T olive oil

3 larger sprigs fresh thyme

40 g bacon (2-4 pieces depending on bacon's length)

3 T pomegranate seeds

1 T minced chives

15 g minced shallots

1/4 c very thinly sliced iceberg lettuce

s&p

Dressing

75 g blue cheese (mild & creamy version)

25 g crème fraîche

50 g mayonnaise

1 g pressed garlic (1 small piece)

big pinch maldon sea salt

fresh ground pepper

1/2 t Worcestershire sauce

1/2 t lemon juice

1/2 t red wine vinegar


In a heavy bottomed pan with a good sealing lid, place the butter, oil, thyme sprigs, water and a little salt & pepper... Once simmering, add the very well peeled asparagus. White asparagus sort of have two layers of skin that needs to be removed or it's too fibrous to even cut easily with a knife. I use a vegetable peeler and take off three swipes on one spot then rotate and continue until clean. Place a lid on the pan and cook for 5-8 minutes depending on their thickness. Mine were mostly done at 5 minutes but a few were thicker than the rest, so I left them in for a couple more minutes. Remove them to plate to cool to room temperature. Leave them out! At room temperature the flavor is more enhanced.


Tip: if the liquid in the pan starts to evaporate too quickly throw in another splash of water.


Using a whisk & bowl, a food processor or a stand mixer, add all the ingredients for the dressing into the machine of choice. Mix until creamy and smooth. (Some people like this dressing chunky, but that goes best with an actual iceberg wedge salad and less with this style dish in my opinion.)


Cook the bacon until brown and crispy. And make sure all of your other ingredients are chopped and ready.


To plate, spread 1 1/2-2 T of the dressing onto the plate and make it a nice round shape all spread out. Then place the amount of asparagus you are using per person in the middle of it. And lay the ingredients as you wish on top of the asparagus. It's sinfully delicious!