Spring is here in Central Oregon and to me, that means lighter meals like big salads for lunch and dinner with bright dressings featuring fruits and herbs.
This spring take on the traditional cobb salad fits the bill! Celebrate vegetables that bridge winter and spring, like beets and spring onions, and fresh additions that are just coming in season, like asparagus. Here, instead of the traditionally used bacon, I wrapped the asparagus with prosciutto and blasted it under the broiler for a couple minutes. The salad greens get a spring twist too; spinach, green leaf, and chopped raw bok choy make the perfect bed for the array of veggies on top.
Did you know that you can eat bok choy raw? Bok choy is perfect in a salad with its crunchy stalks and soft, tender leaves. You may never cook it again!
A couple of local eggs (which Agricultural Connections can also supply) are a rich treat and add some protein to this salad. Top it all off with a bright, lemony vinaigrette flecked with fresh dill, and you’ve got a crave-worthy lunch!Spring Cobb Salads:
8-10 Asparagus Spears
4 oz prosciutto, sliced lengthwise
4 large handfuls assorted salad greens (washed and chopped) such as spinach, green leaf, and bok choy
½ cup sliced red spring onion
1 avocado, sliced
3 beets, roasted, peeled and cut into cubes
2 hard-boiled local eggs, quartered
1/4 cup shredded Colby jack cheese
Lemon Dill Vinaigrette (recipe follows)
Bread for serving (optional)
Lemon Dill Vinaigrette:
1-2 tablespoons chopped red spring onion
1 teaspoon dijon mustard
2 teaspoons local honey
¾ teaspoon kosher salt
Freshly ground pepper to taste
Dash of Worcestershire sauce
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
4 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
¾ cup olive oil
3 tablespoons fresh dill, chopped
Combine the onion, mustard, honey, salt, pepper, Worcestershire sauce, vinegar and lemon juice in a blender. Pulse a few times, then add turn on and add the olive oil in steady stream. Taste the dressing and add more salt, pepper, honey or lemon juice to taste. Stir in the fresh dill.
Note: This can be made one week ahead of time and stored in the fridge.
Make the prosciutto wrapped asparagus: Preheat your broiler to high and place the asparagus spears on a large baking sheet. Toss with a drizzle of olive oil and season with salt and pepper. With a half slice of prosciutto, wrap the asparagus starting just under the scaled tip, and continue down in a spiral.
For the salads:
Broil 3-4 minutes, then flip the asparagus over on the sheet and broil for another 3 minutes until golden brown and crispy. Set aside while you assemble the salads.
In each salad bowl, place a large handful of the mixed greens. On top of the greens, lay the sliced onion, sliced avocado, cubed beets, shredded cheese, and add two egg quarters. Place two asparagus spears on top and drizzle with 1-2 tablespoons of the vinaigrette. Serve with bread or toast if desired.