Sunday, June 23, 2013

Asparagus with Smoky Lemon Yogurt, Chopped Eggs, and Toasted Almonds

If you're looking for something tasty to make for Sunday supper tonight, then look no further. This dish is everything I love about spring, summer, and fresh ingredients! It's colourful, busy, and my new favourite way to eat asparagus. Paired with some crusty bread or even roasted potatoes, it makes a fantastic vegetarian main, or it's perfect on its own for a hearty lunch or side dish. The smoky lemon yogurt dressing is as addicting as it is simple, and you will want to put it on everything! I'd imagine it would make a great marinade or sauce for chicken, fish, and almost any vegetable. Feel free to halve this recipe if you are only cooking for one or two, or making this as a side dish.


4 large eggs
2/3 cup whole, blanched almonds
2 Tbsp. olive oil
2 pounds asparagus, tough ends trimmed or peeled
Kosher or sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Fresh lemon juice and olive oil, to serve

Yogurt Dressing:

2 cups plain greek yogurt
4 Tbsp. lemon juice
2 tsp. smoked paprika
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 tsp. salt


Make the yogurt dressing first so it has more time to marinate and develop a great flavour. Whisk together all the dressing ingredients in a small bowl. Taste and adjust the seasonings to your preference. Cover and set aside until ready to assemble the dish. 

Hard-boil your eggs by placing them in a pot of cold water and bringing it to a boil over high heat. Once the water is boiling, set a timer for 10 minutes and reduce the heat to a simmer. When the timer goes off, drain the eggs from the water and plunge them into ice water to cool them quickly and stop the cooking. Set them aside to continue cooling (I place mine in a bowl in the refrigerator). 

Toast the almonds by placing them in a skillet over medium heat, stirring them frequently until they are lightly browned and fragrant. Set them aside to cool.

Once the eggs and almonds are cool, peel the eggs, coarsely chop both eggs and almonds and set aside.

Heat the olive oil over medium high heat in the largest skillet you have. Once the oil is hot, add in the asparagus spears, placing half in one direction and the other half in the other direction so they will fit in the skillet more evenly. If you only have a small skillet you may have to do this in multiple batches depending on how much asparagus you are using. Cover the skillet with a lid or aluminum foil and cook for 3-5 minutes. Remove the lid or foil, increase the heat to high, season with salt and pepper and continue to cook the spears until they are tender-crisp and well-browned on one or two sides. This will take about another 5-7 minutes.

Spread about 1 cup of the prepared yogurt dressing over a large serving dish or platter, or spoon a scoop onto each individual plate. Place the cooked asparagus spears on top of the dressing, then sprinkle with the chopped eggs and almonds. Finish with a squeeze of fresh lemon juice, a small drizzle of olive oil, and a sprinkle of kosher or sea salt. Spoon a few additional dollops of the yogurt dressing on top and serve.

*Recipe adapted from Smitten Kitchen

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