asparagus-sugar snap salad with toasted sesame + honey-ginger dressing

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I’m restless. It must be the hot, loud whisper of a new season on my neck. Plus, June and its impending solstice is always full of dreams: popsicles like fruit drippings, street music, shorts with long-legged praise, older men on their stoops, sunning themselves, singing each praise like a sermon. Outings way past dusk (which hardly comes at all).

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These, and other things: like sand, and outdoor-umbrella-sunny brunches, like the one I had this weekend, where you clink mimosa glasses with an old college friend and have to spread the coconut-rum butter across your french toast before it melts sloppily in its own bowl in the heat; these are the things that crust summer with glow.

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Red cabbage, like summer, has to be one of the most gorgeous things to cut into: right up there with heirloom tomatoes and nectarines. It’s purple… but then streaky with white like marbled fat on a hunk of good steak… and what more could you want out of a vegetable than a bloody steak? Honestly, very little. Wink along, I’m kidding.

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A satisfying salad for me, doesn’t come plated with a picky long list of criteria: my only real rule is, it ought to be fresh-forward. In this one, the snap peas are snappy and crisp like a spread of fallen leaves. The whole bowl is color flaunt-y rather than color-conservative, which I like — the cabbage is bold and plummy as the lipstick tint I should be wearing. The asparagus is lemony and just barely tender. If you’ve got a whisk, the dressing takes under two minutes to make, ginger-grating included.

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While you’re snapping your sugar peas, with maybe a fan blowing, I hope you’ll also indulge something from your premature summer list: uncork that white wine for a long-stemmed glass and a long-stemmed swig with evening plans for live-anything (music, stand-up, ballet, breakdance), pack your canvas beach duffle, reach for the summer read, the bicycle, the rollerblades. Call an old friend for brunch.

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Best we get a head start.

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Salad:

  • 2 cups asparagus spears, chopped
  • 2 cups sugar snap peas, trimmed
  • 3 1/2 cups red cabbage, sliced thin
  • salt and pepper to taste

Dressing:

  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1″ piece fresh ginger, grated
  • 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
  • toasted sesame seeds to taste
  • salt and pepper to taste

Blanche sugar snaps and asaparagus spears about 2-3 minutes in a pot of of well-salted boiling water. Remove vegetables from pot using a slotted spoon, plunging them immediately into a cold ice bath.

Meanwhile prepare the dressing, whisking together all of the ingredients until smooth.

Drain and pat dry the veggies. Chop sugar snaps into halves or thirds. In a large serving bowl, combine cabbage, asparagus and sugar snaps with salt and pepper to taste. Drizzle over with dressing and toss gently to coat evenly. Sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds.

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2 thoughts on “asparagus-sugar snap salad with toasted sesame + honey-ginger dressing

    • @Ben(j): C’est pourquoi j’adore l’été et toutes ses couleurs ! Ca nous permet de faire des jolies salades. Merci de ta comentario, Ben de Chile :)

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