Asparagus Chopped Salad with Meyer Lemon Dressing

April 30, 2014
Spring, Lunch, Grilling, Healthy, Vegetables

Serves: 4-6

Meyer Lemon Dressing
¼ cup freshly squeezed Meyer lemon juice (or 3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice)
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed orange juice
½ teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
2 tablespoon prepared mayonnaise
1 heaping tablespoon whole grain mustard
2 teaspoons honey
Salt and freshly ground pepper
½ cup olive oil

Whisk together the lemon juice, orange juice, zest, vinegar, mayonnaise, mustards, honey and salt and pepper in a medium bowl. Slowly whisk in the oil until emulsified.

Salad
2 cups plus 2 tablespoons canola oil
2 pocket-less pitas, cut in half and each half cut into ¼-inch thick slices
Salt and pepper
16 spears fresh asparagus, trimmed
5 cups mesclun greens
½ pint grape tomatoes, halved
8 ounces aged white cheddar cheese, cut into ½-inch dice
1 English cucumber, cut into ½-inch dice
½ cup pitted and coarsely chopped black olives
1 cup canned chickpeas, drained, rinsed and drained again

1. Heat 2 cups of the canola oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat to 360 degrees F. Fry the pita slices, in batches, until lightly golden brown and crisp, turning once. Remove with a slotted spoon to a plate lined with paper towels and season with salt and pepper. Repeat.

2. Heat a grill to high or a grill pan over high heat. Brush the asparagus with the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil and season with salt and pepper. Grill the asparagus for 3 to 5 minutes, turning once, for crisp tender. Remove and cut on the bias into 1-inch long pieces.

3. Combine the meclun, tomatoes, cheese, cucumber, olives, chickpeas, and asparagus in a large bowl. Add half of the dressing and toss well to coat, season with salt and pepper. Divide the salad among large dinner plates. Drizzle with more of the dressing and top with the pita chips.