Asparagus salad with breadcrumbs and yoghurt
The spears have a pleasing crunch tempered by a quick bath in some lemon juice.
50g breadcrumbs Olive oil
2 x 400g bunches asparagus
1 unwaxed lemon, zested and juiced
Salt and black pepper
25g parmesan (I use a vegetarian one)
50g toasted walnuts
1 small green chilli, finely sliced
2 tbsp yoghurt
Toast the breadcrumbs in a hot pan with a little olive oil until golden – or in the oven tossed in a little oil at 180C/350F/gas 4 for five to eight minutes.
Snap off the tips of the asparagus and put in a bowl. Then, using a paring knife or peeler, peel away any woody exterior from the bottom to reveal the tender inside. Next, cut the asparagus in half lengthways then cut each into three. Add to the bowl with the lemon zest, half the juice and a good pinch of salt, and leave it to sit for a couple of minutes.
Next, grate the parmesan on top, crumble in the walnuts, add the green chilli and a good pinch of salt and pepper. Toss to combine.
Add the yoghurt to the remaining lemon juice with a tablespoon of olive oil and season, then mix or shake to combine.
When you are ready to eat, tip the asparagus into a serving bowl, add some of the dressing, toss well and taste, adding more salt, pepper or lemon as needed. To finish, top with more dressing and the golden breadcrumbs.
IMAGE: Matt Russell for The Guardian