To keep up with the asparagus season, an impromptu picnic by the lake presented itself as an ideal excuse to make this salad… An almost empty cupboard forced me to do a few wild tweaks to the original recipe, though. The feta cheese was replaced by soft goat cheese. Less salty, indeed, but it made the salad creamier with occasional bursts of flavour. The quinoa was first replaced by barley (really bad idea) and then by wheat (much more successful). All, in all, it was a perfect dish for the a perfect summer day by the lake…
Grilled asparagus, red pepper, creamy got cheese and wheat salad (adapted from the The 10 best asparagus recipes’ column on The Guardian)
- 250g wheat (Triticum turgidum)
- 900g green asparagus
- 2 tbsp olive oil, for drizzling
- 200g roasted, marinated red bell peppers, drained and cut in to bite-size pieces
- 200g soft goat cheese
- 100g fresh coriander or flat-leaf parsley (reserve some leaves for garnishing)
For the dressing
- 4 tbsp olive oil
- 2 tsp soy sauce
- Juice of ½ lemon
- 1 tsp roast cumin seeds, crushed with a mortar
Rinse the wheat and prepare it according to the instructions in the packet.
To prepare the dressing, whisk together the olive oil, soy sauce and lemon juice. Gently crush the cumin seeds with a pestle and add to the dressing.
Rinse and pat the asparagus dry and place on a plate. Drizzle olive oil over the asparagus and roll them until well coated. Season with salt. Arrange the asparagus in a hot griddle pan and cook, turning as needed, until nicely marked on all sides without being burned (it takes about 8 minutes).
Meanwhile, combine the quinoa, dressing, roasted peppers, cheese and parsley in a large mixing bowl. Add the grilled asparagus and gently combine. Serve at room temperature.