Nothing says spring like the green stalks of asparagus peeking out of the ground here in the Pacific Northwest. Washington asparagus is at the peak of its season. Here in Oregon you can find it at Four Seasons Markets and QFC stores. If you would like to buy directly from the source here are a few places in Washington to buy fresh picked asparagus, Washington markets. I was lucky enough to be on a trip in Washington a few weeks back in Yakima one of the many large agricultural growing areas in the state. We stopped by one of the farms to see fresh Washington asparagus popping out of the ground. There are so many ways to enjoy asparagus each day. Start off the morning with Eggs Benedict or a frittata with asparagus. For a light meal midday you can toss asparagus in a salad or a flaky tart. Nothing is better than some roasted asparagus as a side for a grilled piece of salmon or a juicy steak from the grill. I am going to take some of my Washington State asparagus and make a hearty salad that would be good midday or perfect for a light dinner. There are two combinations you can never go wrong with, asparagus and lemon. Try this fresh spring salad with Washington asparagus and add a fresh grilled piece of Pacific Northwest salmon.
Asparagus Salad with Lemon Vinaigrette
16 spears asparagus, chopped
5 cups mixed greens
12 cherry tomatoes
1 large hard boiled egg, peeled and sliced
2 slices cooked and crumbled bacon
8 oz shredded fresh feta cheese or white cheddar cheese
Bring a pot of water to a boil, add the asparagus and cook 2 to 3 minutes, until tender yet firm. Drain and run under cold water to stop it from cooking further. Set aside. Arrange the mixed greens, tomatoes, and asparagus on a plate, top with egg, bacon and cheese and drizzle with the lemon vinaigrette. Enjoy!
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
6 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons snipped chives
Squeeze lemon and measure out 3 tablespoons juice. In small bowl combine lemon juice, mustard, sugar and salt. Slowly drizzle in oil, whisking constantly. Stir in chives, cover and chill.
- Washington State is one of the top growers of asparagus in the United States
- Asparagus is a member of the lily family and is related to garlic, onions, and leeks.
- The National Cancer Institute states that asparagus the highest tested food for glutathione, one of our most potent antioxidant defenses.
- It takes nearly 3 years after asparagus has been planted to reach maturity so that it can be harvested for the full season.
Fresh Washington asparagus coming out of the ground and ready to harvest at Imperial’s Garden fields in Wapato, Washington.