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Weekend Recipe: Asparagus Salad with Oranges, Feta and Hazelnuts

Asparagus Salad with Oranges, Feta and Hazelnuts
America's Test Kitchen

Instead of roasting the asparagus, America's Test Kitchen took a much different approach and made a fresh, vibrant salad with raw asparagus.

Slicing the spears thin was key to keeping them crunchy, not woody. An herb-based dressing complemented the freshness of the asparagus. Sweet orange segments, briny feta and toasted hazelnuts were the finishing touches.

Asparagus Salad with Oranges, Feta and Hazelnuts
Serves 4 to 6

For easier slicing, look for large asparagus spears, about ½ inch thick.

INGREDIENTS

Pesto:
2 cups fresh mint leaves
¼ cup fresh basil leaves
¼ cup grated Pecorino Romano cheese
1 teaspoon grated lemon zest plus 2 teaspoons juice
1 garlic clove, minced
Salt and pepper
½ cup extra-virgin olive oil

Salad:
2 pounds asparagus, trimmed
2 oranges
4 ounces feta cheese, crumbled (1 cup)
¾ cup hazelnuts, toasted, skinned and chopped
Salt and pepper

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INSTRUCTIONS

1. FOR THE PESTO: Process mint, basil, Pecorino, lemon zest and juice, garlic, and ¾ teaspoon salt in food processor until finely chopped, about 20 seconds, scraping down sides of bowl as needed. Transfer to large bowl. Stir in oil and season with salt and pepper to taste.

2. FOR THE SALAD: Cut asparagus tips from stalks into ¾-inch-long pieces. Slice asparagus stalks ⅛ inch thick on bias into approximate 2-inch lengths. Cut away peel and pith from oranges. Holding fruit over bowl, use paring knife to slice between membranes to release segments. Add asparagus tips and stalks, orange segments, feta and hazelnuts to pesto and toss to combine. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve.

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