This week I am motivated by Diane Eblin’s Friday Foodie Fix (The W.H.O.L.E. Gang) challenge. The secret ingredient is asparagus.
Asparagus is practically a staple in our house but it’s not usually prepared in a way that hasn’t been done a million times in thousands of kitchens across the country. We eat asparagus in risotto and roasted with oil, salt, and pepper. And, easy, easy, easy, steamed or grilled and drizzled with Italian dressing.
So, it seemed like a good time to be more creative. I needed to be inspired and that called for a roadtrip to Whole Foods. OK, I didn’t really need much of an excuse to go to Whole Foods. The whole way there and back I prepared asparagus dishes in my mind. (I am a master of mental cooking — some people have a soundtrack in their minds. I have a foodtrack.)
I came up with Asparagus Mango Salad and an appetizer — Roasted & Wrapped Asparagus. I haven’t made the second one yet. Tomorrow is another day.
I really wanted a recipe that would be easy, look great, and provide flavors complementary to the unique flavor of the asparagus. So, something bright and sweet — mango! Add the zing and beauty of the red onion. Finally, top it with the smoky saltiness of bacon. And, here it is…
Asparagus Mango Salad
1 bunch asparagus
1 tablespoon olive oil
½ fresh ripe mango, diced
2 slices red onion, diced
3 slices cooked GF bacon, chopped
Lemon Balsamic Dressing
salt and pepper
Preheat the oven to 400° F. Line a cookie sheet with parchment.
Rinse and trim the asparagus. Place the spears one layer thick on the cookie sheet. Drizzle with a tablespoon of olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and freshly ground pepper.
Roast in the oven for 15 minutes until tender. Remove and cool.
Cut the cooled asparagus into 1-inch pieces. Add the diced mango, red onion, and cooked bacon pieces. Salt and pepper to taste. Dress with a few tablespoons of Lemon Balsamic Dressing.
Serves 4 (or 2 hungry) people.
Note: I used Boar’s Head Fully Cooked Bacon — gluten free.