Skillet Asparagus Salad with Goat Cheese

Our final item on the Easter brunch menu was this fantastic salad. I had just seen the recipe in my new Cooking Light magazine, and I knew we needed to try it!

I will say that making the dressing is a bit time-consuming, but I made it the night before and refrigerated it, and that worked well. Overall, it tasted fantastic and was a big hit with us and with our guests. Enjoy!

Asparagus salad with citrus vinaigrette

Skillet Asparagus Salad with Goat Cheese
From Cooking Light, May 2014
Serves 6

Ingredients:
1 teaspoon olive oil
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 pounds asparagus spears, trimmed (about 30 medium spears)
1 cup water
2 teaspoons julienne-cut orange rind
1 teaspoon julienne-cut lemon rind
1/4 cup fresh orange juice
1 teaspoon sugar
1 tablespoon dry white wine
1 1/2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/8 teaspoon salt
5 teaspoons olive oil
2 cups mixed baby salad greens
2 ounces goat cheese, crumbled (about 1/2 cup)
3 tablespoons chopped pecans, toasted
1 tablespoon fresh tarragon leaves
1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

Directions:
1. Combine first 4 ingredients in a large bowl; toss to coat. Heat a large cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat. Add one-third of asparagus mixture; cook 4 minutes or until lightly charred and crisp-tender, stirring occasionally. Remove from pan; set aside. Repeat procedure twice with the remaining asparagus mixture.

2. Place 1 cup water in a microwave-safe measuring cup. Microwave at HIGH 2 minutes or until water just boils. Add orange rind; let stand 20 seconds. Drain, reserving rind. Repeat procedure with lemon rind.

3. Combine orange rind, orange juice, and sugar in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low; cook until juice mixture measures about 3 tablespoons (about 5 minutes). Combine wine, lemon juice, mustard, 1/4 teaspoon pepper, and 1/8 teaspoon salt in a medium bowl; stir with a whisk. Gradually add 5 teaspoons oil, stirring constantly with a whisk. Stir in orange juice mixture.

4. Place 1/3 cup greens on each of 6 plates. Divide asparagus evenly among salads. Top evenly with cheese, pecans, and tarragon. Stir lemon rind and parsley into orange juice mixture; drizzle dressing over salads.

Nutritional info:
Calories:117
Fat:8.4g
Protein:5g
Carbohydrate:7g
Fiber:3g
Cholesterol:4mg
Sodium:152mg

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