Turns out, grilled asparagus is also silly good leftovers. Cold leftovers, even. And when I found myself craving a healthy salad to carry me through a busy afternoon, I reached for my container o' grilled yumminess. Part experiment, part get-tasty-good-into-my-body-STAT, the salad was fantastic. I had to share.
Grilled Asparagus Salad
Organic baby spinach
Organic baby carrots
Organic cherry tomatoes
Cracked black pepper
1. Grill asparagus. My method of choice: Clean and trim asparagus; Toss asparagus into a Ziploc bag with a few drizzles of olive oil; Shake your money maker...and the bag; Place the asparagus stalks on a hot grill pan (med-high heat) and cover with a grill press. (These babies pop as they cook and won't get those lovely grill marks if you don't keep them in check); Rotate with tongs after approx. 6 minutes or once you note grill marks, and cook other side under press for another few minutes until marked; Transfer cooked asparagus onto a plate in a single layer (stacking hot stalks leads to mush-paragus), then sprinkle lightly with garlic salt and cracked black pepper; Eat fresh, or allow to cool to add to salad. (Keeps well in Tupperware.)
2. Add a few handfuls of baby spinach to bowl. (You should probably take a breather after doing this one.)
3. Shred a handful of baby carrots with a microplane over the spinach. You can also shred some parm at this point, but *I'd actually recommend subbing feta or blue cheese next time. The parm is pretty subtle, and this salad could use the creamy kick of one of these other more bold cheeses.
4. Clean and half cherry tomatoes. Add to bowl.
5. Slice cooled asparagus and add to bowl.
6. Lightly drizzle with olive oil, a splash of balsamic, and cracked black pepper to taste. (The grilled asparagus has a ton of natural flavor, so don't overdo it on the balsamic or that's all you'll taste.)
Serve with a toasted "crouton" topped with red pepper flakes and grated parm for a carbtastic treat with your healthy, beautiful bounty.
What are some of your favorite ingredients for a healthy, flavorful summer salad?